Scottish Affairs Committee Press Notice

Announcement 2 of Session 2007-08

13 November 2007

New Inquiry

Employment and Skills for the Defence Industry in Scotland

The Scottish Affairs Committee has agreed to undertake a substantial new inquiry, to start in the New Year, into Employment and Skills for the Defence Industry in Scotland.

In July 2007 a £7.7bn increase in the defence budget over three years was announced. £3.8bn will be spent on two 65,000 tonne Royal Navy aircraft carriers. A significant proportion of the construction will take place in Scotland and the order for the carriers will be completed at yards on the Clyde and at Rosyth. The Secretary of State was reported as saying that the contract would support or create 10,000 jobs, including those at shipyards across the UK.

In the context of the £3.8bn contract for new aircraft carriers, the Scottish Affairs Committee is announcing a substantial new inquiry into Employment and Skills for the Defence Industry in Scotland. The inquiry will consider how Scotland can maximise the opportunities arising from defence construction contracts, including the contract for the new aircraft carriers, and will examine:

  • The Scottish skills base: the adequacy of the current skills base, the provision of training and the balance between specialist and transferable skills for future defence industry needs;

  • The distribution of jobs and economic benefit across Scotland;

  • The opportunities for associated industries and the wider supply chain, including small businesses across Scotland.

The Committee welcomes written evidence from interested parties on any, or all, aspects of the inquiry by 8 January 2008. The Committee will be arranging a series of public oral evidence sessions, and details of these will be announced in due course.

Submissions should be in Word or rich text format and sent by e-mail to  The body of the e-mail must include a contact name, telephone number and postal address.  The e-mail should also make clear who the submission is from.

Submissions must address the terms of the inquiry and should not as a rule exceed 2,000 words.  Paragraphs should be numbered for ease of reference, and the document should include an executive summary.


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