DEF260304 - No. 20

Session 2003-04, 26 March 2004

Defence Procurement Inquiry: Terms of Reference

Defence Procurement Inquiry: Terms of Reference

Committee announces Terms of Reference for Procurement Inquiry and issues call for evidence

The Defence Committee has today issued a call for evidence and terms of reference for its annual inquiry into Defence Procurement. The terms of reference are as follows:

  • To examine the progress of a selection of key defence equipment projects

  • To review the progress made in implementing the Defence Industrial Policy (launched in October 2002) and the extent to which the expected benefits are being delivered

  • To examine the steps being taken to improve MoD’s equipment procurement performance, in particular developments relating to MoD’s Smart Acquisition arrangements

Announcing the inquiry’s terms of reference, Defence Committee Chairman, Rt Hon Bruce George MP said:

“Our Defence Procurement inquiry will allow us to build on our previous work in this area, particularly in respect of the Defence Industrial Policy. A number of important equipment projects, for example the Future Carrier programme, will be reaching critical stages over the coming months and we will be examining the progress made by these and other key projects. The outcome of our inquiry will help inform the annual defence equipment debate.

The Chief of Defence Procurement has been in post for a year and we will be particularly interested in examining his plans for improving MoD’s performance in procuring defence equipment, including developments relating to its Smart Acquisition arrangements.”

Over the next few months the Committee will be taking written and oral evidence. Details of oral evidence sessions will be announced once witnesses are confirmed.

The Committee invites all interested parties to submit written evidence which addresses these terms of reference. The deadline for the submission of evidence is Friday 30 April 2004.

Evidence should be submitted by e-mail as a Word document to The body of the e-mail must include a contact name, telephone number and postal address. The subject line of the e-mail should also make clear who the submission is from and the title of the inquiry. If it is not possible to submit evidence by e-mail, it may be sent by post to the address above, marked for the attention of the Clerk of the Defence Committee.

Submissions should be concise, and certainly no more than 3,000 words. Those submitting evidence are reminded that evidence should be original work, not previously published or circulated elsewhere. Once submitted, no public use should be made of the evidence, unless permission has first been obtained from the Clerk of the Committee.


1. Terms of reference define broadly the scope of a Committee inquiry, setting out the ground that the Committee intends to cover.

2. Committee Membership is as follows: Rt Hon Bruce George MP (Chairman), Mr Crispin Blunt MP, Mr James Cran MP, Mr David Crausby MP, Mike Gapes MP, Mr Mike Hancock CBE MP, Dai Havard MP, Mr Kevan Jones MP, Mr Frank Roy MP, Rachel Squire MP, Mr Peter Viggers MP.

3. The Defence Committee is appointed to examine on behalf of the House of Commons the expenditure, administration and policy of the Ministry of Defence. Its constitution and powers are set out in House of Commons Standing Order No. 152.

4. The Committee has a maximum of eleven members, of whom the quorum for any formal proceedings is three. The members of the Committee are appointed by the House and unless discharged remain on the Committee until the next dissolution of Parliament.

5. News Release: No. 20


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