02 June 2012
The devil will be in the detail. How much of the £5.5bn will actually stay in, and benefit the UK?? Just how much of it is money which actually goes overseas?? How many pesetas (sorry .. speuros) does each ASCOD II hull built in Spain cost??
Norman - UK
03 June 2012
But there *is* a strategy for UK defence procurement and has been since 2010. That strategy, as both Hammond and his predecessor have delineated, is cutting the budget to enable the gambling-banker-generated deficit to be paid off. This has resulted in many programmes being cut to the bone and further. The UK can not afford a coherent defence strategy, and will never be able to again. Blame Labour, Thatcher's deregulation of the financial markets, whatever. It doesn't matter to the beancounters. Options, "Choices", Mantell Protocols, and a host of other euphemisms - cut, cut and cut again, but don't put in changed processes for Value For Money - cut first, just get rid of people and armed forces' capability. We'll sort out the mess later - maybe. Or if we lose the lection we can carp at the opposition unfortunates left with our mess.
AlMiles - Bristol, UK
06 June 2012
Regretfully, the evolving impression I get rergarding BAE is that it relies too much on government contracts to guarantee it's income; closing units that are not in 'immediate' receipt of such a contract. Where is the agressive attempt to find new markets? For instance, Portsmouth is of such a size that it would appear ideal for contructing OPV/IPV for 3rd countries. I know there have been a few problems with Oman, and earlier Trinidad contracts (not all directly of BAE making), but these serve to improve the product over time if the concepts are persevered with, surely? As for 'growth', BAE seems to rely on using it's financial muscle to take over other companies that have come up with a good product. Overall, BAE seems blinkered.
Gavin Gordon - Chichester