Ministry of Defence losing 'millions a year' due to Brexit, analysis suggests

PUBLISHED: 12:46 28 December 2018 | UPDATED: 12:46 28 December 2018

A RAF Chinook helicopter is used in the heavy snow. Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA.

A RAF Chinook helicopter is used in the heavy snow. Photograph: Owen Humphreys/PA.

PA Archive/PA Images

New analysis has found that the Ministry of Defence is losing hundreds of millions of pounds a year in procurement costs because of the fall in the value of the pound due to Brexit.

Former Tory defence minister Guto Bebb said it was “disastrous” that the Ministry of Defence is being “forced to pay billions more for its equipment because of Brexit” .

The research, carried out by the People’s Vote campaign, found that the devaluation of the pound has cost the armed forces more than £1.7 billion over the last two years.

The analysis was based on the UK’s average spend on military equipment imports over the last five years using the average exchange rate in 2017 and 2018 compared with the exchange rate just before the EU referendum.

It claims that the fall in the pound could mean F-35 fighter jets would cost an extra £22 million each.

A Chinook helicopter that could have cost £149 million in 2016, would cost over £218 million if bought today.

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Guto Bebb said: “No-one voted for our armed forces to be underfunded but that’s exactly what has happened.

“In a time of increasing global tension it is disastrous that the MoD is being forced to pay billions more for its equipment because of Brexit, especially given that there’s already a funding black hole.

“The prime minister’s deal will do nothing to restore confidence in the pound and if her deal is passed we will be overpaying for years to come.

“The only way to sort this mess out is to take the decision out of the hands of politicians in Westminster and give it back to the people.”

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