30 March 2010

UK MoD Weapons Buying

The Brits are re-kitting their armed forces.

A series of new contracts and agreements marking key steps towards the next generation of aircraft and air-launched weapons of the UK Ministry of Defence's (MOD) has been announced by Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth today, Monday 29 March 2010.

In a move that will see industry work together on the development of the UK's air-launched weapons, known as Complex Weapons, the Defence Secretary announced that the MOD has entered into an interim Partnering Agreement with MBDA in the UK. Building on the successful Assessment Phase, this co-operation within industry will help shorten the time from development to delivery of these weapons.

Not everyone supports all the buys, however.

Defence ministers are condemned today for spending up to £12.3billion on a fleet of aircraft that are unable to fly in Afghanistan.

The Ministry of Defence has bought 14 aircraft designed to transport troops and equipment and carry out air-to-air refuelling. But the Airbus A330-200 planes cannot be flown in warzones because they lack proper protection, a National Audit Office report has revealed.

Fitting them with armour, antimissile systems and early warning kit to allow them to operate in ‘high threat environments’ would cost the taxpayer hundreds of millions of pounds more, the spending watchdog said.

By: Brant

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