Defence Review: Defence in a competitive age
In March 2021, UK Defence Secretary, Ben Wallace, outlined the Government’s defence strategy over the next ten years through the latest Defence Review.
What is the Defence Review?
‘Defence in a competitive age’ highlights a shift in focus for the Ministry of Defence with areas such as cyber, space, robotics and digital connectivity all earmarked for extra investment.
In response to the review, Ben Wallace MP has said:
“The Government’s commitment to spending £188-billion on defence over the coming four years – an increase of £24-billion or fourteen per cent – is an investment in the Prime Minister’s vision of security and prosperity in 2030.”
Defence Review Highlights
- The UK Armed Forces will become a threat-focussed integrated force with a continued shift in thinking across land, sea, air, space and cyber domains.
- Defence will spend over £85-billion on equipment over the next four years to allow the Armed Forces to adapt, compete effectively, and fight decisively when needed. This will support 400,000 jobs across all four nations of the UK.
- The British Army will receive significant investment to become more agile, integrated, lethal and expeditionary. The service will receive an additional £3-billion on new vehicles, long-range rocket systems, air defences, drones, electronic warfare and cyber capabilities.
- £120-million will create new Ranger Regiments; four battalions will form the Regiment that will support Special Forces in collective deterrence activity. This will range from training to accompanying personnel on the ground.
- The Royal Marines will benefit from a £200-million investment over the next ten years to form the Future Command Force, a Commando force that is persistently forward deployed conducting specialist maritime security operations.
- UK air capabilities will bolstered with an injection of over £2-billion in the Future Combat Air System which will deliver a pioneering mix of crewed, uncrewed and autonomous platforms including swarming drones and the ultra-modern Tempest fighter jet.
- The Review also outlined plans to make the UK a Science and Technology superpower. To help achieve this, the Government will increase economy-wide Research & Development to 2.4% of GDP by 2027 and invest £14.6 billion in R&D across government in the next year.
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