HC Deb 16 July 1997 vol 298 cc237-8W
Mr. Keith Simpson

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what sum is allocated to maintaining the Joint Rapid Deployment Force in the current financial year; and what it is as a percentage of the defence budget. [8184]

Dr. Reid

The Joint Rapid Deployment Force (JRDF) is not a standing force. Rather, it brings together existing forces and equipment from the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force to form the most appropriate joint force for the circumstances. It is not however possible to determine what proportion of their costs might be attributable to JRDF roles, since this fluctuates over time.

The Chief of Joint Rapid Deployment Force Operations is the peacetime focus for the JRDF and as such is separately identifiable. He and his staff, who are embedded within the Permanent Joint Headquarters and would form the core of a deployed headquarters, together cost some £1.5 million per year. As this represents only a single, small element of the JRDF concept, it is not sensible to compare their costs to the overall Defence Budget.