Defence Committee Press Notice

Session 2009-10, 10 December 2009

Publication of Report: Ministry of Defence Winter Supplementary Estimate 2009-10


The Defence Select Committee today publishes its Report on the MoD’s Winter Supplementary Estimate and asks the House of Commons to approve the Estimate.

For the first time since operations in Iraq and Afghanistan began, funding for those operations was this Financial Year formally sought from the House of Commons at the time of the Main Estimates, in July.  This Winter Supplementary Estimate maintains the capability of the MoD to sustain its activities in theatre and to meet future challenges.

In its Report, the Committee:

  • notes that while expected costs for Iraq have fallen faster than expected this year from £877 to £388 million, costs for Afghanistan are expected to rise from £3,495 million to £3,754 million

  • notes that the recently announced deployment of an additional 500 troops to Afghanistan will add a minimum of £45 million to these costs; and

  • expresses concern over the reduction in the Science Innovation Technology sub-head within the Estimate, and seeks further information on this from the MoD.

Commenting on the Report, Committee Chairman, the Rt Hon James Arbuthnot MP, said: “We are calling on the House to approve the MoD’s Winter Supplementary Estimate.  Monies for operations were voted on by the House in July and while Afghan costs are rising, reductions in costs for Iraq mean that the MoD is not seeking at this point additional funding for operations, although it may have to come back to the House to do so in its Spring Supplementary Estimate in February.

“But we do have concerns about the MoD’s Science Innovation and Technology budget which appears from the surface of the Estimate to have been squeezed quite significantly, including in important areas such as surveillance and the gathering of intelligence.  We hope the MoD will provide us with some explanation on this matter.”


The Committee was nominated on 13 July 2005. The Defence Committee is appointed by the House of Commons to examine the expenditure, administration, and policy of the Ministry of Defence and its associated public bodies.


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