§ Mr. David Atkinson
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what contingency plans his Department is making in the event of the failure of computer systems to recognise the year 2000; when he expects them to be in place, and tested; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Spellar
The Ministry of Defence recognises the risk posed to operational capability by the Year 2000 problem. While every effort is being made to ensure that all systems are Year 2000 compliant, some work will not be completed in time. The MOD is, therefore, developing contingency plans to ensure that we continue to meet our operational commitments and that essential Defence capabilities are maintained. The target date for completion of these plans is 31 December 1998, with testing continuing throughout 1999, and regularly thereafter to ensure that the plans remain valid for any similar problems which might arise in the future.