HC Deb 20 October 1999 vol 336 cc583-5W
Mr. Heseltine

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list those contracts, awarded to(a) British companies and (b) British research facilities under the US Strategic Defence Initiative and their total value in each year since 1985. [94430]

Mr. Hoon

So far as contracts awarded to British Companies are concerned, I refer the right hon. Member to the answer given on 19 July 1999,Official Report, column 424.

bodies and agencies, in the last five years, specifying the dates on which each title was first produced, the frequency with which each title is produced and the current secrecy classification of each title. [93853]

Mr. Ian McCartney

The Cabinet Office has a wide range of in-house publications to keep its people well informed and to ensure the efficient operation of the Department in delivering its objectives. Most publications are now available on the Department's intranet.

So far as contracts awarded to British research facilities are concerned, the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the UK and US Governments in respect of the Strategic Defence Initiative (SDI), provides for contracts to be placed directly with the other Party's universities, which could include research facilities. As with contracts established directly with British companies, no central or comprehensive record is maintained.

It is believed, however, that most research has been undertaken on a Government to Government basis under an arrangement known as Letters of Offer and Acceptance (LOAs). In such cases research has been undertaken by the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (DERA) or its forerunners. The total value of LOAs entered into since 1985 is approximately $150 million. While expenditure on an annual basis is not available in detail, work commenced at approximately $2 million per annum in 1986, building to $12 million over a seven-year period, then falling away to some $5 million currently.

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