§ Mr. Livingstone
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to his answer of 3 February,Official Report, column 888, in which month the contract from the Directorate of Science (Ballistic Missile Defence) is due to end; whether the further option of one year on the contract is to be taken up; how much this option is worth; how many staff at the Chemical and Biological Defence Establishment are working on the contract and what their work entails; and how the contract is progressing. 
§ Mr. Arbuthnot
This is a matter for the chief executive of the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency. I have therefore asked him to reply.
Letter form John Chisholm to Mr. Ken Livingstone, dated 18 July 1995:Your Question to the Secretary of State for Defence asking for further information concerning the contract between the Directorate of Science (Ballistic Missile Defence) and the Chemical and Biological Defence Establishment (CBDE) has been passed to me to reply as the Chief Executive of the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (DERA) which now includes CBDE as one of its Divisions.The then Director General of CBDE wrote to you on this matter on 3 February. The option of a further year on the contract has been taken up by the US and the contract end date is now May 1996. The total value of the work (including the further option year) is $11.2 million. Thirty five staff at CBDE are employed for some of their time on this contract. The nature of the work is as previously described, namely technological research into the defeat of attacks by ballistic missiles with chemical or biological warheads. The programme of work is progressing well. I hope this information is helpful.