§ Mr. Neubert
My Department is hard at work on a whole range of matters including the definition of user requirements, the selection of an external consultant to manage the design and construction work, negotiations for the purchase of land and the provision of utilities and road access, and various personnel aspects of relocation.
§ Mr. Bell
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what is the policy of his Department in relation to the appointment of an external project manager with regard to the relocation of the defence quality assurance headquarters and laboratories to Teesside; what consideration is given to the appointment of local firms; and if he will make a statement;
(2) what is the policy of his Department with regard to the involvement of locally based companies in the process of relocation of offices and services out of London to the provinces; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Neubert
The Department's policy generally and in relation to the appoinment of external project managers is to follow the Government rules for fair and open competition. Successful bidders need to demonstrate that they have a clear understanding of departmental requirements, practical and efficient proposals to meet them and the necessary capacity and experience to manage projects of the size and complexity envisaged. Local knowledge is considered to be a useful additional asset.