Departments: Internet

Defence written question – answered on 24th October 2007.

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Photo of Norman Baker Norman Baker Shadow Minister (Cabinet Office)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many websites his Department operates; how many it operated at 1 January 2005; and what the estimated annual cost has been of running his Department's websites in the last five years.

Photo of Derek Twigg Derek Twigg Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence) (Veterans)

The Ministry of Defence and armed forces collectively maintain four corporate websites. Identified direct expenditure on running these in the last five years was as follows:

Annual expenditure (£)
Website URL 2002-03 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06 2006-07
Ministry of Defence 124,350 111,000 127,192 147,000 177, 875
Royal Navy (1)54,000 230,000 197,888 (2)197,000 178,398
British Army n/a 160,000 96,000 n/a 160,000
Royal Air Force 87,500 108,000 121,213 (3)126,860 (4)173,859
n/a=Not available

(1) Cost for site management only

(2) Includes £64,000 cost of running two sites during transition

(3) This was erroneously shown as the cost for 2006-07 in the table—10 May 2007, Official Report, column 348W.

(4) Includes cost of re-launch.

In accordance with the Cabinet Office-led programme of website rationalisation, the MOD is progressively reducing the number of other websites maintained by business units within the Department. On 1 January 2005 MOD and the armed forces collectively maintained eight corporate websites, which have now been reduced to the four listed above. In phase one of the Cabinet Office-led web rationalisation programme MOD identified 44 additional sites, which have now been reduced to 31. I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 10 May 2007, Hansard, columns 348-52W, to Mrs. May which gave the costs of running sites in this category in 2006-07. A further 18 sites, now reduced to 17, were identified within the scope of phase 2 of the web rationalisation programme. Further reductions are planned between now and 2010. Costs for these sites could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

In addition, there are numerous individual unit, regiment, charity, sports and recreation sites, which are maintained independently by the organisations in question and are not classed as part of the corporate websites maintained by the Department. Lists of these sites could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

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