New Inquiry: Defence Acquisition

14 March 2012

The Committee will consider whether the White Paper on National Security through Technology (Cm 8278) will assist the UK in responding to the threats it may realistically be expected to face.


The Committee specifically aims to address the following issues:

  • The interaction between and mutual compatibility of the Gray and Levene reforms, and the extent to which the reforms are achievable in the light of the current and foreseeable restrictions on resources, including personnel, and the need for MoD Head Office and Defence Equipment and Support to continue to perform their primary functions.
  • How the requirements of national defence and security and the required capabilities are determined; how decisions are taken between alternative solutions and on whether and when projects should be initiated; how the balance of needs and resources is allocated between different services and commands; how the provision of support to the required capabilities in integrated into the acquisition; oversight of equipment budget; and the MoD’s relationship with industry.
  • The procurement processes used; relationship between principles of open competition and technological advantage; input from industry (including SMEs) and from the end military user; making the chosen acquisition strategy work; recruitment, training and retention of skilled personnel at both customer and procurement roles at all levels; transparency and accessibility of the processes; monitoring and control of projects.
  • Maintenance of the UK military industrial base; the provision of UK research and development by both MoD and industry; how far the White Paper provides clarity for industry; support for exports and the extent to which the principle of off-the-shelf procurement is compatible with this; how lessons have been learned from past successes and failures including in the acquisition of Urgent Operational Requirements; and the implications of bi- and multi-lateral procurement.

The Committee would welcome written evidence to this inquiry. This should be sent to the Clerk of the Defence Committee by Wednesday 4 April 2012.

How to respond

The Committee would welcome written evidence to this inquiry. A copy of the submission should be sent by e-mail to and should have Defence Acquisition in the subject line. Submissions should be sent to the Clerk of the Defence Committee by Wednesday 4 April 2012

If you have any queries on the submission of evidence contact Alda Barry, Committee Clerk, tel: 020 7219 3280, email:

Image: Ministry of Defence

Share this page