Defence expenditure

This page highlights some of the current parliamentary material available on defence expenditure. This includes select committee reports, briefing papers on current legislation and other subjects produced by the parliamentary research services, and the latest Early Day Motions put down by MPs.

Commons Briefing Papers

DateDescription
16.11.2015Defence expenditure: Social Indicators page
Defence expenditure: Social Indicators page. By Rob Page. SN/SG/2623.
21.10.2015Defence Expenditure - NATO 2% Target
In 2006, NATO allies set a target to spend 2% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on defence. The UK continues to meet this target, but when reporting its defence expenditure to NATO, the UK now includes several items of expenditure which had not previously been included.
10.03.2015Sources of Statistics
This briefing paper brings together sources of statistics on 27 subject areas covered by the Economic Policy & Statistics and Social & General Statistics sections of the House of Commons Library. In doing so it draws upon the knowledge of Library specialists, aiming to provide comprehensive topic-by-topic guides for use by anyone interested in the statistical series that underpin the United Kingdom.
02.03.2015Japan: Abe's constitutional and security agenda
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (the LDP) won a decisive victory in snap elections held in December 2014. One of the reasons for holding early elections was Abe's desire to amend Japan's 'peace Constitution' so that in future it expressly permits the country's armed forces to come to the aid of allies under attack. This is known in Japan as the right of 'collective self-defence'. In mid- 2014 the Japanese Cabinet approved interpreting the Constitution in this way. Abe is now seeking to give this new interpretation legal and constitutional underpinning. Important as it is, amending Article 9 of the Constitution is just one part of Abe's plans on the defence and security front. Japan is now looking to enhance its defence capabilities so that it can play a greater role in promoting international 'peace, stability and prosperity'. It will also increase its ability to respond effectively to any attack on the Senkaku Islands (as Japan calls them) in the East China Sea.
12.09.2014NATO Wales Summit 2014: outcomes
The 2014 NATO Wales Summit discussed Russia, Ukraine, Iraq, defence spending amongst allies and the end of combat operations in Afghanistan.
03.09.2014Social Indicators
This Research Paper summarises a wide range of social statistics. Subjects covered include agriculture, crime, defence, education, elections, environment and energy, health, housing, local government, population and migration, social security and transport.
11.07.2013Defence Reform Bill
The Defence Reform Bill was introduced in the House of Commons on 3 July 2013. Second Reading has been tabled for 16 July 2013.
10.05.2013In brief: Outsourcing defence procurement
The Defence Reform Bill will allow the Government to proceed with its plans to change the way defence equipment is procured.
01.10.2012The cost of international military operations by the UK (2001-2013)
This note provides a summary of the estimated and actual costs of international military operations conducted by the UK in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. The paper includes information on Urgent Operational Requirements (UOR) as well as comparisons with US expenditure. Comprehensive analysis of policy developments concerning Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya can be found on the associated Topic pages.
08.02.2012The Defence of the Falkland Islands
This note looks at the UK defence presence in the Falkland Islands and reviews the current debate about whether the Islands are adequately defended in the event of future aggression.

Lords Library Notes

DateDescription
27.11.2015United Kingdom's Role in Supporting International Security and Stability
This Library Note has been prepared in advance of the debate in the House of Lords on 3 December 2015: "that this House takes note of the United Kingdom's role in supporting international security and stability in the light of the Strategic Defence and Security Review".
06.12.2013Defence Reform Bill
This Note provides background information on the Defence Reform Bill, which is due to have its second reading in the House of Lords on 10 December 2013.

Select Committee Reports

DateDescription
13.09.2011The performance of the Ministry of Defence 2009-10.
Government response. Defence Select Committee; Ministry of Defence report [Commons]
15.02.2011The major projects report 2010.
Public Accounts Committee report [Commons]
08.12.2010Managing the defence budget.
Public Accounts Committee report [Commons]
08.12.2009MoD winter supplementary estimate 2009-10.
Defence Select Committee report [Commons]
27.10.2009Ministry of Defence Main Estimates 2009-10.
Government response. Ministry of Defence; Defence Select Committee report [Commons]

Early Day Motions

DateDescription
14.09.2011DEFENCE BUSINESS SERVICES
That this House expresses profound concern at the proposed appointment of a commercial management company to partner Defence Business Services; believes that allowing a private sector ...
17.02.2011TRIDENT SUBMARINE PROPOSALS
That this House strongly condemns the Government plans to order the steel for the first new Trident replacement submarine before any formal decision is made on whether to go ahead with ...
27.10.2010TRIDENT REPLACEMENT
That this House welcomes the announcement of a reduction in operational warheads from 160 to 120 in the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) and a delay in the Main Gate decision ...
26.05.2010TRIDENT AND THE STRATEGIC DEFENCE AND SECURITY REVIEW
That this House welcomes the Government's intention to hold a strategic defence and security review; notes with concern the stated intention to conduct it without giving due consideration ...
01.02.2010CONDUCT OF LORD MANDELSON
That this House notes that the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, right hon. Lord Mandelson, told the North West Evening Mail newspaper on 23 January 2010 of the ...

Glossary

  • Commons Briefing Papers (CBP) Papers providing in-depth and impartial analysis on every major piece of primary legislation and on other topics of public and parliamentary concern. Regular statistics papers are also published.
  • Early Day Motions (EDMs) - formal motions submitted by MPs in the House of Commons
  • POSTnotes (POST PN) - proactive four-page policy briefings from the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology based on reviews of the research literature, interviews with stakeholders and peer review, commissioned by the POST Board
  • Lords Library Notes (LLN) - authored publications by the research section of the House of Lords Library that provide analysis of Bills, subjects for debate in the House and other issues of interest to Members.
  • Select Committee Reports - papers produced by all select committees of both Houses