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While there has been a downward trend in strength over the last five years, the Government is committed to maintaining the overall size of the Armed Forces and is taking forward a range of measures to improve recruitment and retention. Importantly, the Armed Forces continue to meet all their current commitments, keeping the country and its interests safe. The Armed Forces are fully funded to meet their target strength and we continue to increase funding to Defence year on year.
The Ministry of Defence keeps the numbers of military personnel under close review. On a quarterly basis we publish UK Service personnel statistics on strengths, requirements, intake, applications and outflow, by Service. The latest edition, with information as at 1 October 2019 and showing trends since 1 April 2012, can be found at the following website: