The impact on UK Defence of the proposed merger of BAE Systems and EADS

The House of Commons Defence Committee has published written evidence on the impact on UK Defence of the proposed merger of BAE Systems and EADS.

In the report Rt. Hon. Sir Geoffrey Pattie, Robert Page, Professor Philip Lawrence, Prospect, Professor Trevor Taylor, Royal United Services Institute, Royal Aeronautical Society and the Campaign Against Arms Trade give evidence.

The Campaign Against Arms Trade therein writes:

…lobbying by BAE and the other military companies as well as their friends in Government, has left the UK committed to heavy expenditure on large items of military equipment including aircraft carriers, fighter aircraft and Trident. These purchases do not address today’s security challenges and are questioned even by some within the military.

Professor Philip Lawrence states:

Sovereign independence in defence strategy and procurement is a myth. Even the UK’s submarine-based nuclear deterrent requires missiles and other technology supplied by a third party. For more than 40 years key air-defence platforms, such as Jaguar, Tornado and Typhoon, have been the result of international collaboration. Such collaborations are messy and often sub-optimal in a business sense, but the cost of going it alone on major projects has been impossible for over 40 years, not only in Europe, but also now for the United States, who required international partners on JSF. Across Europe a plethora of small, nationally-based projects for platforms, such as Fighters and Transport aircraft, would be disastrous financially and cause huge inter-operability problems within the Western Alliance.

Read the full report here.