§ Mr. Colvin
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence for what military requirements the 17 fuel servicing trucks referred to in tender No SM21ARAF4330 are required; what consideration he has given to leasing or contract hiring of such vehicles; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Arbuthnot
The 17 fuel servicing trucks are dual purpose refueller/defuellers and are required to support on-base operations: the most common use is for small aircraft and helicopters. The leasing of equipment is routinely considered as part of the replacedment decision. In general however, there is no commercial equipment available which meets the specific military requirements and the leasing or contract hiring of purpose-built fuel servicing trucks has been shown to be uneconomic. As the specialist nature of these vehicles rule out the leasing of commercially available types, and the high cost of refurbishment of existing vehicles precludes that option, purchase was assessed to be the most economic means of meeting this operational requirement.