Fears grow United kingdom industry is going to be excluded from intend to buy armoured vehicles for Army

Fears are increasing United kingdom companies be excluded from among the greatest equipment purchases through the British Army in a long time – ongoing a pattern for that Secretary of state for Defence to award huge contracts to foreign suppliers at the fee for the domestic arms industry.

MPs around the defence and public accounts committees wrote towards the Secretary of state for Defence demanding a reason of methods countless eight-wheeled mechanised infantry vehicles (MIVs) is going to be acquired.

They’re concerned purchasing the armoured vehicles – that will equip the Army’s new strike brigades – won’t be released to competition.

Rather they fear the offer is a “single source” arrangement where it is going to some supplier with no competitive bids, and also the likely supplier is going to be German group Rheinmetall’s “Boxer” design.

The British Army has purchased a number of Ajax vehicles to boost its ageing fleet Credit:  Andrew Linnett  /MoD/Crown Copyright

Meg Hillier, chair from the public accounts spending watchdog committee, has written to Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson highlighting the troubles.

Saying the committee have been told a choice about how MIVs is going to be purchased is imminent, Ms Hillier added: “I am concerned by suggestions you gaze to favour just one source approach favouring a foreign provider.”

She stated: “Given the amount of spend too much on the majority of defence programmes, I’m not convinced this single source approach can invariably deliver savings. Additionally, it fails to take into consideration the broader advantages to the United kingdom economy from sourcing inside the United kingdom.”

Raising fears about not putting the MIV contract to competition, Ms Hillier added: “UK companies say they don’t likely to be gifted contracts however they would hope they might compete on an amount arena.”

The concerns were echoed through the defence select committee. Inside a letter to Defence Procurement Minister Harriet Baldwin it requested when the MoD’s pledges for competition “within the availability chain” for that MIV resulted in it’d recently been made the decision anything wouldn’t be competed.

Committee chairman Julian Lewis also requested the way the MoD would “ensure value for money” is achieved when the MIV contract is single sourced, and “whether an exam has been created from the effect on lengthy-term purchase of britain’s armoured fighting vehicle industry in case the MIv is acquired overseas”.

A spokesman for that MoD stated: “No decision continues to be adopted the purchase technique for MIV and at this time our approach remains competitive procurement inside the logistics whenever we can.”

BAE lands £5bn Storm purchase to Qatar, but exactly how does it affect future deals?

Defence group BAE Systems’ shares leaped at the begining of buying and selling as investors reacted to some lengthy-anticipated export purchase from the company’s Storm jet fighters.

BAE shares rose almost 3pc following a £5bn purchase of 24 of jets plus a training and support package to Gulf nation Qatar was announced on Sunday mid-day. BAE, Airbus and Italy’s Leonardo have a 1-third be part of the Storm programme.

The offer also put a lifeline to BAE’s programme building the Hawk training jet – the aircraft traveled through the Red Arrows – whose production lines are not having enough orders. 

BAE Systems share cost

Qatar’s purchase also incorporated a contract for weapons manufacturer MBDA – that is jointly of BAE, Airbus and Leonardo – for Brimstone and Meteor missiles.

Combined, the aircraft, weapons, training and support is worth about £6bn, based on the joint United kingdom-Qatar announcement.  

Charles Woodburn, leader of BAE, stated: “We are happy to start a new chapter in the introduction of a lengthy-term relationship using the Condition of Qatar and also the Qatar Military, so we expect to working alongside our customer because they still develop their military capacity.”

Selling the aircraft to Qatar will “support a large number of British manufacturing jobs”, stated Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson, who oversaw the signing towards the agreement in Doha.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson and Minister of Condition for Defense of Qatar Khalid bin Mohammad Al Attiyah sign a contract around the purchase of Storm Credit: Anadoulo

While the purchase may be the greatest export order for Typhoons inside a decade, it comes down far too late for nearly 2,000 BAE staff.

In October the organization stated it might be slashing almost 7pc of their headcount – mainly in the military air business, making Typhoons – to lessen costs and the jet’s production line running due to poor sales. 2 yrs ago the organization let go hundreds of staff and slowed the development rate as orders stalled.  

The offer came as global weapons sales broke a 5-year downturn, based on the Stockholm Worldwide Peace Research Institute’s (Sipri) annual survey. Sipri stated that sales through the 100 greatest defence companies in 2016 rose 1.9pc to $374.8bn.

BAE’s purchase of Typhoons – which is built in the company’s Lancashire base –  will relieve some pressure on the company, that has not sealed a purchase for that jets in 2 years.

The brand new Typhoons is going to be built at BAE’s base in Warton, Lancashire Credit: PA

The Qatar deal was flagged having a letter of intent to help make the purchase in September, but there have been doubts whether it might be completed.

FTSE 100-listed BAE’s announcement from the purchase also hinted at caution, noting “the contract is susceptible to financing conditions and receipt by the organization of first payment, that are likely to be satisfied no after mid-2018”.

Berenberg analysts have stated that Qatar buying Typhoons wasn’t from military necessity, but rather about strengthening the country’s political ties using the West because it faces troubles nearer to home.

Much of Qatar’s wealth originates from being among the world’s largest exporters of liquefied gas, and also the arises from this are utilized to invest worldwide. Qatar is really a leading investor within the United kingdom, where it’s sunk greater than £40bn into assets including stakes in Canary Wharf, the Shard, and Harrods.

Qatar includes a majority stake working in london landmark The Shard Credit:  Cultura Exclusive

However, Qatar faces problems nearer to home. Some of the country’s neighbours – including Saudi Arabia, the Uae and Bahrain – have severed diplomatic and trade ties using the country, claiming it supports terrorism and criticising its relationship with Iran.

Other recent defence deals highlight Qatar’s tries to engage using the West. Previously year the little nation has decided to spend $20bn accumulating its air pressure, buying F-15 jets in the US and Rafales from France. 

Such a mixture of kinds of aircraft inside a relatively small fleet will ramp up training and maintenance costs as pilots and engineers need to learn different systems along with a bigger stock of spares is needed, in contrast to getting just one style of fighter. Typically a little air pressure would focus on a single type to help keep costs lower. Qatar’s air pressure presently just more than a dozen fast jets however the Storm, Rafale and F-15 orders will require it to greater than 100 fighters. 

Mr Williamson’s announcement from the purchase known links between Qatar and also the United kingdom, describing the nations as “sharing a detailed and longstanding defence relationship”.

It added: “The two countries share mutual interests of countering violent extremism, and making certain stability in the area, which purchase will deepen individuals ties by preventing terrorism from distributing and protecting our success and security in your own home.”

The RAF continues to be on joint exercises with Qatar’s air pressure lately, the Defence Secretary stated, an exercise prone to continue because the defence deal develops, with Qatari pilots and ground crew prone to get trained in the United kingdom. 

The way the purchase will affect about a lengthy-anticipated second order for Typhoons from Saudi Arabia remains seen. BAE had its greatest export success using the jet in 2007 when Riyadh agreed a £20bn deal to purchase 72 of these in 2007. 

BAE has lengthy been awaiting a follow-up order however this has yet to materialise despite an extended sales campaign.

Another purchase continues to be hit by a number of factors, including growing competition from rival manufacturers, growth and development of newer aircraft with advanced stealth technology, in addition to political hurdles.

The Storm is among the world’s innovative fighters Credit: Sgt Rob Merry ABIPP/RAF

Defence handles Saudi Arabia were within the headlines within the summer time once the Campaign Against Arms Trade contended that sales licences ought to be revoked. The campaigners lost a higher an account judicial review if this was ruled the weapons licences didn’t constitute a danger of breaking worldwide law, however the furore it produced put Saudi Arabia’s utilization of weapons in Yemen the main attraction.

In October, then Defence Secretary Mister Michael Fallon stated he was “personally involved” in sales negotiations with Riyadh however that an offer had been hampered by critique of Saudi Arabia by MPs.

Talking with the Defence Select Committee, Mister Michael stated aircraft like the Storm were the “shop window” for for Britain’s aerospace industry and export sales were fundamental to supporting the battling sector. However, he added: “Sadly, I must repeat for this committee that critique of Saudi Arabia within this Parliament isn’t useful and i’ll let it rest there.”

QinetiQ chief shrugs off defence spending worries but shares dive further

A multi-billion funding hole within the United kingdom military budget may have little effect on defence and technology group QinetiQ’s revenues, based on the company’s leader.

Reporting half-year figures that demonstrated revenues up 8.5pc to £392.5m and pre-tax profits 35pc at £69.3m, Steve Wadey reassured investors concerning the FTSE 250 company’s future.

He stated: “We are delivering services and products that really help our customers using the economic pressures they face and provide the abilities which are important to them. These aren’t incidental, but fundamental abilities towards the country.”

Qinetiq share cost

However, investors required fright despite his assurances and also the shares fell almost 6pc to 207p.

The decline was ongoing a retreat from the a lot of 320p within the summer time, and that was hastened at the beginning of a few days when peer Ultra Electronics sounded an income warning, citing tough United kingdom markets. Ultra stated “mounting pressures within the funding of United kingdom defence programmes”, had led to the Secretary of state for Defence (MoD) pausing, delaying or scrapping “numerous programmes”.

Almost 80pc of QinetiQ’s revenues originate from defence activities and also the MoD is definitely its greatest customer, representing 63pc of their sales. Services it offers incorporate a 25-year, £5.6bn contract to run test and evaluation services like the famous Empire Test Pilots’ School in Wiltshire and explosive device ranges round the United kingdom.

QinetiQ lately ran the worldwide ‘Formidable Shield’ missile testing exercise

QinetiQ lately ran the “Formidable Shield” exercise within the Outer Hebrides, testing missiles which culminated using the interception of the simulated ballistic missile that were fired for an altitude of 200 miles.

Concerns about QinetiQ are now being driven by worries concerning the UK’s capability to fund its decade-lengthy £178bn defence spending plans. At the beginning of the entire year the nation’s Audit Office sounded the alarm over if the MoD can afford them.

MoD permanent secretary Stephen Lovegrove later place the shortfall at nearer to £20bn, while analysis by PwC stated the military’s financial black hole is nearer £30bn, an amount that could require major cuts to Britain’s defence abilities.

QinetiQ’s profits soared 35pc within the six several weeks to September 

Fears were increased on Tuesday when former service leaders told home of Commons Defence Committee the United kingdom military was “no longer fit for purpose”.

The plunge in the need for the pound has compounded spending worries, because the MoD’s devices are bought in dollars in the US, which makes it relatively more costly.

The Federal Government is effectively managing a defence spending review right now that is likely to lead to cuts to Britain’s military abilities.

However, Mr Wadey stated he was certain that QinetiQ has got the right strategy to reply to the cuts, saying his company was “at the center from the UK’s capacity generation and assurance”.

He added the strategy he introduced 18 several weeks ago had predicted the restricted spending and meant the organization was placed to “embrace” a larger drive for good value in the MoD and “tough” United kingdom markets.

QinetiQ also set an objective of growing non-United kingdom revenues and also the recent results for the six several weeks towards the finish of September show the amount of worldwide sales rose from 21pc from the total to 26pc.

“The MoD continues to be great about supporting us worldwide with export campaigns,” he stated. “Being this type of supplier towards the United kingdom military is a superb lever that to draw in foreign customers.”

BAE’s wishes to sell Storm jets undermined by ‘criticism’ in Parliament, states Defence Secretary 

Landing a vital order for BAE Systems’ Storm jet fighter from Saudi Arabia has been hampered by “criticism” from the Gulf nation in Parliament.

The claim originated from Defence Secretary Mister Michael Fallon because he gave evidence towards the MPs around the Defence Select Committee on Wednesday.

This summer time BAE delivered the ultimate Storm inside a 72-aircraft order from Saudi Arabia agreed in 2007. The FTSE 100 defence group has lengthy been trying to have a second deal in the country but talks have to date demonstrated fruitless, and the organization hasn’t had positive results in winning other orders.

A week ago BAE stated it had been cutting almost 2,000 jobs – about 6pc of their United kingdom workforce – with the greatest part of them originating from its aircraft division as orders for that Storm dry out.

Mister Michael stated he’s been personally involved with negotiations with Saudi Arabia concerning the “vital” purchase of a lot of fighters but added that the securing deal had been hampered by critique from MPs concerning the country.

BAE Systems is cutting jobs at its Lancashire plants which build Storm fighters  Credit: Phil Noble/Reuters

“Sadly, I must repeat for this committee that critique of Saudi Arabia within this Parliament isn’t useful and i’ll let it rest there,” Mister Michael stated. “We have to do everything easy to encourage Saudi to invest in batch two order – I believe they’ll invest in batch two.”

The Defence Secretary agreed that aircraft like the Storm and Hawk as utilized by the Red Arrows were a “shop window” for Britain’s aerospace industry.

To keep britain’s capacity in building such advanced aircraft Mister Michael stated the “right thing” ended up being to “look for more export opportunities”.

He added: “We want to get entire government and hopefully the entire of parliament in it.Inches

The Defence Secretary known as for Parliament to ‘get behind’ defence export campaigns Credit: Barcroft

Saudi Arabia continues to be condemned within the United kingdom over its human legal rights record and also the UK’s agreement to licence vast amounts of pounds of weaponry for purchase towards the country was the topic of judicial review. Our Prime Court ruled the federal government was to grant the export licences for that defence equipment, inside a blow to Campaign Against Arms Trade which introduced the situation.

Independent defence analyst Howard Wheeldon stated he “wholeheartedly agreed” with Mister Michael’s calls to back the export campaign for Typhoons.

He added: “This isn’t just in regards to a company and jobs – sturdy the country’s defence capacity. The United kingdom includes a brilliant product in Storm to market worldwide but undermining that in Parliament destroys Britain’s capability to build similar products vital for nation’s defence later on.Inches

BAE redundancies

The Secretary of state for Defence has faced critique itself previously over the amount of support it provides to Britain’s defence companies attempting to secure foreign sales. Britain particularly lost to France when India made the decision to purchase a number of the nation’s Rafale fighters within the Storm.

This was partly attributed to France’s “total exports” strategy, involving all sectors of industry and big ministerial backing. The United kingdom has since promised to provide more support to Britain’s arms companies, underneath the “success agenda” targeted at backing companies for example BAE once they seek move.

Saudi Arabia is BAE Systems’ third-largest market, behind the united states and United kingdom, and purchasers towards the Middle Eastern condition comprised 21pc from the company’s £19bn of revenues this past year.

BAE declined to comment.

New military vehicle hailed as the solution to the British Army’s needs

A new military vehicle being touted as the solution to the British Army’s needs continues to be unveiled by German company Rheinmetall.

The organization is showcasing its “Boxer” armoured vehicles in a huge defence show now and it is flagging its United kingdom credentials because it steps up its campaign to win a £3bn deal to equip the British military.

The Military is keen to exchange its ageing wheeled armoured vehicles with increased capable ones that will equip new strike brigades which are a vital a part of Britain’s new military strategy.

Generals want eight-wheeled Military Infantry Vehicles (MIVs) operating rapidly and sources state that an agreement for between 500 and 800 from the vehicles might be tendered through the finish of the season.

Peter Hardisty, Rheinmetall md, stated the Boxer is the greatest vehicle to do the job and it has its origins inside a pan-European project which Britain brought out of.

“Boxer has British DNA,” he stated. “Even although the United kingdom pulled from the consortium, another people stored the look features Britain wanted.”

Boxer has British DNA. Although the United kingdom pulled from the consortium, another people stored the look features Britain wanted

Built with a consortium headed by Germany’s Rheinmetall, Boxer is viewed senior military commanders like a leading contender for just about any contract. However, this past year it had been the origin of debate with rival manufacturers claiming Rheinmetall was while being handed the job with no competition.

Competitors – for example General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin, France’s Nexter, Singapore’s ST Kinetics and Finland’s Patria – claimed Boxer was around two times the cost of the products, and might have little manufacturing footprint within the United kingdom – claims denied by Rheinmetall.

Last fall the MoD made an appearance to back lower, issuing a “preliminary market engagement” document inviting suppliers to request more details concerning the MIV.

However,  defence sources suggest the necessity is really great anything could still visit a “single source” deal to hurry up MIVs stepping into the leading line cut the cost from the Boxer by 5pc.

Rheinmetall is applying the Defence and Security Equipment Worldwide show in Docklands now to produce a form of Boxer it believes is going to be ideal for that United kingdom military – in addition to highlight its “Britishness”.

“By value 60pc from the vehicle is going to be produced in the United kingdom,” stated Peter Hardisty, Rheinmetall md. “We aren’t speaking in regards to a final set up line, but parts fabricated within the United kingdom in manufacturing facilities within the Midlands, North East and Scotland.”

Also, he asked a feeling of selecting MIVs on their own industrial footprint instead of their abilities.

“The protection they provide troops is type in my thoughts,Inches he stated. “I don’t believe the British Army should sacrifice training learnt hard means by Afghanistan with ‘Snatch’ Land Rovers. It might be morally wrong to place youthful servicemen and ladies in less properly protected vehicles.”

An MoD spokesman stated: “No decision continues to be adopted the purchase technique for MIV and at this time our approach remains competitive procurement inside the logistics whenever we can. A comment isn’t expected before the finish of 2017.”

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MoD names boss of ��41bn programme to construct new Trident submarines

The Secretary of state for Defence has named the person accountable for the huge £41bn programme to exchange Britain’s Trident submarines, a job which can make him among the country’s best compensated civil servants.

Defence Secretary Mister Michael Fallon has confirmed the task of leader from the Submarine Delivery Authority (SDA) goes to Ian Booth, who formerly headed the Aircraft Carrier Alliance (ACA), the condition-industry body billed with constructing the brand new Queen Elizabeth-class warships.

Overseeing the SDA – which includes a £31bn budget with £10bn contingency fund to construct the 4 Dreadnought submarines – comes by having an annual earnings of just about £500,000, three occasions around the Pm earns.

The SDA job’s remuneration is split almost 50:50 between fundamental pay and bonuses, determined by hitting performance targets as focus on the submarines progresses.

“Ian is extremely respected and incredibly capable,” stated independent defence analyst Howard Wheeldon. “He introduced the brand new carriers in promptly and managed your budget as design changes were created by government about if the ships might have catapults and traps or use F-35 jets which could remove and land without one.Inches

The Royal Navy’s current missile submarines will walk out service within the 2030s

Before heading the ACA, Mr Booth held senior industry roles including posts building Astute attack submarines and also the Storm jet fighter.

The Defence Secretary has frequently cautioned how critical Britain’s nuclear programmes are, saying receiving the new submarines “cannot and should not slip”.

“We will absolutely challenge BAE along with other suppliers for example Rolls-Royce,” Mister Michael has cautioned. “They will be incentivised to help keep the targets and they’ll suffer when they don’t.”

The SDA job has demonstrated a hard one for that MoD to fill. Running this type of huge and sophisticated project is beset with risks and also the pay is comparatively low in contrast to heading an identical size undertaking in industry, which makes it difficult to get a appropriate business heavyweight ready to defend myself against the task.

Defence Secretary Mister Michael Fallon watches the very first bit of steel being cut for that Dreadnought class submarines Credit: Reuters

Defence sources have stated that the probability of ruling budget and schedule are high, with one adding that “being connected using the failure of such a much talked about  project would be a career killer”.

Modelled around the effective Olympic games Delivery Authority, the SDA was created in the spring for the exact purpose of making certain the Dreadnought is available in promptly and budget. It will likewise manage focus on your building the rest of the Astute submarines for that Navy, and support of vessels already operating.

The Royal Navy is billed with keeping one Trident missile submarine at ocean whatsoever occasions, and also the current Vanguard submarines result from arrived at the finish of the service resides in the 2030s.

The task also offers oversight of construction from the Astute attack submarines Credit: BAE

The first steel for that new submarines was decline in October this past year at BAE Systems’ Barrow-in-Furness shipyards, and also the defence giant is leading focus on the programmes with partners including Rolls-Royce that will produce nuclear powerplants for that vessels.

Mr Booth is going to be replaced in the ACA by vice admiral Mister Simon Lister, who’s going for a sabbatical from his Navy career to defend myself against the task of overseeing construction from the second from the new aircraft carriers, HMS Prince of Wales.

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Manta ray submarines and flying fish torpedoes: exactly what the Navy for the future may be sailing in and firing

Engineers dealing with the Royal Navy have let their imaginations go wild designing what submarines for the future could seem like and also have develop stunning concepts which mimic nature.

Vessels formed like manta sun rays, eel-like drones and swarms of fish-formed torpedoes a few of the minds suggested for revolutionising underwater warfare.

Eel-like drones might be deployed in the submarines

“With greater than 70pc from the planet’s surface included in water, the oceans remain among the world’s great mysteries and untapped sources,” stated Commander Peter Pipkin, the Royal Navy’s fleet robotics officer.

“It’s predicted that in 50 years’ time you will see more competition between nations to reside and work on ocean or under it. With this thought the Royal Navy is searching at its future role, and just how it will likely be best outfitted to safeguard Britain’s interests around the world.Inches

One concept envisioned is manned “mothership” submarine having a whale shark mouth and the entire body of manta ray, which may be quicker than anything presently operating.

Commander Peter Pipkin, the Royal Navy’s fleet robotics officer, believes radical technology could participate the pressure for the future Credit: Louise George

Driven by systems like the bladeless fans introduced by vacuum company Dyson and operated by batteries, it wouldn’t simply be quiet but additionally manage to  immense top speed. 

The propulsion systems for everyday use would draw water in with the mouth and pump it the rear, a quieter process than current propeller technology. 

For intense bursts of speed, the engineers propose a “supercavitating” system, where lasers around the submarine are utilized to boil water before it, developing a bubble of air that provides less resistance, meaning the vessel can travel far faster than normally possible. 

Having a 3D-printed shell produced from acrylic materials and super strong alloys, it could dive much deeper than current submarines.

Blueprint of future submarine

The vessel would be also coated with small graphene scales to assist deaden its noise emissions. These scales would be also controlled by passing electricity through, so they may be gone to live in reduce drag.

Other concepts include eel-like drones, which could carry weapons and sensors countless miles, travelling with the water by mimicking an eel’s sine-motion. 

Micro drones may be ammunition for the future, released in shoals that induce huge communications and surveillance systems.

A torpedo for the future could look like a flying fish

Torpedoes that copy flying fish will also be imagined, swimming just beneath the top of water and popping over the waves, which makes them difficult to identify within the radar clutter brought on by choppy seas. 

Even though the ideas suggested seem far-fetched, every one has a grounding in technologies viewed as worth researching.

“Today’s Royal Navy is among the most technologically advanced forces on the planet, and that is because we’ve always searched for to consider differently and develop ideas that challenge traditional thinking,” stated Commander Pipkin.

“If only 10pc  of these ideas become reality, it’ll put us in the leading edge of future warfare and defence operations.” 

The choppy top of the ocean might make it tough to identify ‘flying fish’ torpedoes

Rear Admiral Tim Hodgson, the Secretary of state for Defence’s director of submarine capacity, added: “You want to encourage our engineers for the future to become bold, think significantly and push limitations. From Nelson’s tactics in the Fight of Trafalgar to Fisher’s revolutionary Dreadnought battleships, the Royal Navy’s success has always rested on a mix of technology and human skill.”

The concepts would be the work of youthful scientists and engineers from UKNEST, a not-for-profit organisation which promotes science, engineering and technology for naval design. Graduate scientists and engineers who required part within this project originated from Atlas Elektronik, Babcock, BAE Systems, BMT, DSTL, L3, Lockheed Martin, MOD, QinetiQ, Most Highly Regarded, SAAB Seaeye, and Thales.