§ Dr. David Clark
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his answer of 7 December,Official Report, column 173, (1) on what consideration he bases his policy of not revealing the future expenditure plans of MoD budget holders at the level of detail requested;
(2) whether he has considered changing his policy regarding the release of detailed information on the future expenditure plans of MoD budget holders; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Hanley
The 10-year costing of the defence programme, known as the long-term costing, upon which details of future expenditure plans are based, is designed for internal planning purposes only. Approval to commit expenditure is subject to separate procedures and endorsement by Ministers as appropriate. To avoid giving a misleading impression as to the firmness of our plans, therefore, we would not normally provide such details. My right hon. and learned Friend has no plans to change this policy.