Royal Navy: Type 31e Frigate - Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 11:06 am on 6th September 2018.

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Photo of Lord Tunnicliffe Lord Tunnicliffe Opposition Deputy Chief Whip (Lords), Shadow Spokesperson (Defence), Shadow Spokesperson (Treasury), Shadow Minister (Transport) 11:06 am, 6th September 2018

My Lords, this Question prompted me to look at the National Shipbuilding Strategy, whose first birthday is today. When it was published a year ago, it was meant to be a solid basis for industry to develop. It is interesting to see how it is starting to erode. Paragraph 56 said of the Type 31e ships:

“The first will be in service by 2023”,

but “by 2023” means during 2022. The Minister has just answered a similar question by saying that it will be by the end of 2023. This is the first incremental crumble in the strategy. In paragraph 61, the strategy said:

“We have set a maximum £250 million per ship price for the Type 31e”.

Are either of those statements still sound, or is this one year-old strategy going to crumble incrementally, like all the strategies before it?