HC Deb 06 November 1989 vol 159 c482W
Mr. Macdonald

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what is his Department's latest assessment of the short-fall in the number of trained service personnel in each of the armed services.

Mr. Archie Hamilton

Shortfalls in service manpower are measured by comparing adult trained strengths against trained manpower requirements. As at 30 June 1989, shortfalls were:

Royal Navy 786, Royal Marines 10, Army 4,113, Royal Air Force 3,566.

In order to encourage greater efficiency in the use of manpower, policy decisions have been taken to aim manpower plans at levels a little below the full requirement. Not all of these shortfalls are, therefore, unplanned.