§ Mr. Menzies Campbell
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make it his policy to conclude a draft agreement with other European countries to develop the Meteor missile. 657W
§ Mr. Spellar
[holding answer 25 February 1999] Technical and commercial assessment of the bids to meet the MOD's requirement for a Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile, BVRAAM, continues. The Matra BAe Dynamics Meteor missile bid is in competition with Raytheon Systems Ltd. FMRAAM and ERAAM proposals to meet the BVRAAM requirement. A decision on the competition is expected later this year.
Discussions are continuing with potential partner nations, Germany, Italy, Spain and Sweden, on a Memorandum of Understanding for collaboration on the METEOR proposal provided by Matra BAe Dynamics. Progress is being made and it is hoped that the MOU negotiations will be concluded by the summer. If the METEOR bid is successful, it is expected that the agreed MOU would be signed shortly after a decision on the competition is announced.