The Ministry of Defence have confirmed that no projects have been placed on hold as a result of Brexit.
The answer came to light in a written parliamentary question, shown below.
Virendra Sharma Mp for Ealing, asked:
“To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many projects his Department has put on hold due to the requirements of planning for the UK leaving the EU without a deal.”
Mark Lancaster, Minister of State at the Ministry of Defence, responded:
“The Ministry of Defence has not put any projects on hold to date. The Department continually reviews its plans against emerging priorities, taking into account any developments in the Government’s approach to the UK leaving the EU.”
On a related note on issues faced by the UK defence industry post Brexit, a report titled ‘SDSR 2015, Brexit and Future UK Defence Acquisition – Issues and Challenges‘ argues that one result of the Brexit vote has been the fall in the value of sterling against foreign currencies and the report also argues that this instability is likely to continue.
“This is important because, according to US State Department figures (for the years 2002 to 2012), the UK has an established demand for importing defence equipment from the US, including significant equipment purchases (such as C-17 aircraft and Predator Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, or UAVs) as well as spares related to US equipment operated by the UK Armed Forces.”
Not only that, but the UK plans to buy a number of products from the US, including additional Apache helicopters, nine P-8 Maritime Patrol Aircraft, 138 F-35B aircraft and 20 next-generation Protector UAVs, all of which will add to the yearly demand for defence imports from the US in terms of spares.
“Given the deterioration in the value of the pound against the US dollar, this must represent a major financial challenge for the MOD. It is a situation not helped by the weakening of the pound against the euro; for example, the British Army plans to acquire 589 Ajax vehicles for £3.56 billion, the majority of the costs of which are in euros,” the report notes.