HC Deb 11 March 1997 vol 292 c187W
Mr. Harry Greenway

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many troops are expected to be stationed in Gibraltar over the next five years; at what cost; and if he will make a statement. [18596]

Mr. Soames

Current UK force levels in Gibraltar were determined in the Review of the Gibraltar Garrison and announced by my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond and Barnes (Mr. Henley) when Minister of State for the Armed Forces on 7 July 1994,Official Report, columns 262–63. The review identified the core activities central to our defence responsibilities there. At present, there are some 660 service personnel stationed in Gibraltar, including about 160 members of the Gibraltar Regiment. On current plans, there will be about 50 fewer personnel stationed in Gibraltar in five years' time. These projected force levels enable us fully to carry out our core tasks. They are a clear manifestation of Her Majesty's Government's continuing commitment to the people of Gibraltar.

Over the same period, the cost of the Gibraltar garrison will reduce to less than £50 million per annum, compared with expected costs of some £63 million for the current financial year.