Nimrod Aircraft

Defence written question – answered on 12th November 2010.

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Photo of Angus Robertson Angus Robertson Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Defence), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Foreign and Commonwealth Office), Shadow SNP Westminster Group Leader

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence

(1) what assessment he has made of the likely effect on the level of long-range search and rescue provision of the cancellation of the Nimrod MR4A project;

(2) what assessment he has made of the effect of the cancellation of the Nimrod MR4A aircraft order on the ability of the UK to honour its obligations under section 2.6 of Annex 12 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation;

(3) what assets he has designated for search and rescue under section 2.5 of Annex 12 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation; and where each is located;

(4) what assessment he has made of the effect of the closure of the Aeronautical Rescue Co-ordination Centre at RAF Lossiemouth on the UK's ability to honour its obligation in section 2.1 to 2.4 of Annex 12 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation;

(5) where the rescue co-ordination centre required to be designated under section 2.6 of Annex 12 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation is located.

Photo of Peter Luff Peter Luff The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 28 October 2010, Hansard, column 450-51W, to Mr McCann, Mr Ainsworth and Mr Jones which made it clear that we are now developing a longer term plan to mitigate the impact of the cancellation of Nimrod MRA4. Meanwhile the UK will continue to provide search and rescue services using a range of assets depending on the response required.

No decision has been taken to close the Aeronautical Rescue Co-ordination Centre, though future arrangements are subject to further work following the decision to withdraw the RAF from Kinloss.

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