Procurement

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 18th April 2016.

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Photo of Daniel Zeichner Daniel Zeichner Shadow Minister (Transport) 12:00 am, 18th April 2016

What steps his Department is taking to support British jobs and industry through its procurement process.

Photo of Philip Dunne Philip Dunne Minister of State (Ministry of Defence) (Defence Procurement)

In the recent strategic defence and security review, the Ministry of Defence agreed a new strategic objective of contributing to the nation’s prosperity. We do that in many ways, not least by spending some £20 billion a year with industry, around half of which is in the manufacturing sector, and some £4 billion with small and medium-sized enterprises.

Photo of Daniel Zeichner Daniel Zeichner Shadow Minister (Transport)

Will the Minister tell the House just how much his Department has saved by buying cheap steel from Sweden? Does he think that that in any way offsets the devastating impact on our steel industry?

Photo of Philip Dunne Philip Dunne Minister of State (Ministry of Defence) (Defence Procurement)

I am in a position to update the House on the steel component of the aircraft carrier contract, which is much the largest defence procurement contract. Of the structural steel, some 95,000 tonnes have been procured from UK steel mills over the period of that contract.

Photo of Rehman Chishti Rehman Chishti Conservative, Gillingham and Rainham

Can the Minister confirm that the United Kingdom works very closely with countries such as Pakistan on defence procurement? Will he join me in welcoming the Foreign Minister of Pakistan, who is sitting at the top of the Public Gallery?

Photo of John Bercow John Bercow Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Speaker of the House of Commons

Order. First, one should not refer to the place to which the hon. Gentleman referred. After six years in the House, frankly, he ought to know that. Secondly, that was pretty wide of the question.

I call Stephen Phillips. Not—

Photo of John Bercow John Bercow Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Speaker of the House of Commons

Ah! Mr Phillips is here. Splendid. How could I have thought otherwise for a moment? It is only that the hon. Gentleman has perambulated to a different position in the Chamber. We are delighted to see him.