Joint Strike Fighter Aircraft

Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 3rd November 2017.

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Photo of Kevan Jones Kevan Jones Labour, North Durham

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the estimated cost is for support and maintenance for each RAF and Royal Navy F-35 aircraft once those aircraft reach initial operational capability with each of those branches of the armed forces.

Photo of Harriett Baldwin Harriett Baldwin The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence

The UK F-35 programme is on track to reach initial operating capability by the end of 2018. All F-35 aircraft are owned and operated by the RAF, but are manned by both RAF and Royal Navy personnel.

The programme is currently operating within its cost approvals, for both initial procurement and support.

The current estimate for F-35 support costs from 2006-2020 is £1.2 billion. This is for the UK's contribution to the F-35 Global Support Solution, and support and maintenance for the UK fleet. It also includes initial commitments for integration of UK weapons, infrastructure and development of training facilities.

Support costs beyond this point will form part of approvals that will be sought through the normal Investment Approvals Committee process.

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