§ Mr. Jenkin
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many trained fast jet pilots are serving in flying roles in the RAF; and how many have served in each year since 1997. 3WS
§ Mr. Ingram
The number of trained Fast Jet Pilots serving in flying roles in the RAF at 1 October 2003 was 533. The numbers since 1997 are shown in the following table:
Number 1 April 1997 639 1 April 1998 615 1 April 1999 581 1 April 2000 543 1 April 2001 545 1 April 2002 523 1 April 2003 548
The numbers of flying posts in the RAF are subject to constant review and will change throughout a year.
Financial year Ship Cost (£) Remarks 2001–02 MV Tees fisher 17,750 Coastal Tanker to supply HMS Albion with fuel post build MT Bardsey 45,178 Coastal Tanker to supply fuel to HMS Ark Royal post refit 2002–03 MV Mersey Fisher 98,242 Coastal Tanker to supply HMS Invincible with fuel post refit 2003–04 MV Dicksi 87,500 Ocean/Tanker to supply fuel to Oil Fuel Depot Thanckes' MT Black Rock 44,678 Coastal Tanker to supply fuel to HMS Bulwark post build MV Mersey Fisher 24,375 Coastal Tanker to supply fuel to HMS Bulwark post build 317,723 1 This vessel had to be chartered by the Department because the MOD's vessel, the Maersk Rapier was delayed while on a commercial charter. Cost of this voyage is in the process of being entirely recouped by the MOD as compensation against the third party who chartered the MOD's vessel and were responsible for the delay.
The MOD also has the Maersk Rapier on permanent charter. The Rapier is a multi-tasked tanker which not only supplies all fuel to the naval facilities in the United Kingdom, Gibraltar, Falkland Islands and Souda Bay, Crete but it is also chartered to supply aviation fuel to Cyprus, Ascension Island and Falkland Islands. The MOD charters the vessel to commercial companies when it is not in use for defence requirements.