CDS - "MoD should not prop up ailing British industries"

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by chasndave, Jul 18, 2010.

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  1. Trans-sane

    Trans-sane LE Book Reviewer

    Suspect he might have been reading Lewis Page.


    And on that note I'll sit back and watch the fireworks
     
  2. msr

    msr LE

    I suspect he has raised from slumber and had his nasal passages tingled by the scent of arabica.
     
  3. Trans

    I did see something ages ago by Page about this, namely his usual "Why-do-we-insist-on-buying-British-when-you-can-get-bigger/better/faster/cheaper-kit-from-the-US-for-1/10000000th-of-the-price" garbage. That said, I seem to recall binning it pretty much instantly (as I do with anything written by Page, particularly "The Register" - you'll find more believeable journalism in The Sport).
     
  4. seaweed

    seaweed LE Book Reviewer

    The MoD always seems to bgger it up by gold-plating the spec so that the price goes to where no-one else wants it, and then bgger it up some more by insisting on changes which become a blank cheque to the supplier, amd whose implementation ultimately delays the project so that might have been wizard in year x is humdrum when it eventually comes out in yr x + y, by which time the qty has been cut so that the unit price has gone up even more. It's a hundred years now since Fisher had a revolutionary new battleship built in a year, complete with technical advances that were amazing for their day. Compare with the AEW Nimrod fiasco which bled £8bn without delivering ANYTHING, and later four expensive ships sunk because of no AEW (oh there were men in them, too). Aaaaaaargh!
     
  5. The problem with not supporting our industries are that they are the ones with a vested interest in retaining security/supply lines in times of conflict. Its all very well outsourcing cheaply to India - but if they have agreed not to support us to keep the peace with Pakistan then magically things are not going to happen on time.

    Even with people we are working side by side with - if America tell their companies that they want priority over our order because their tax man insists on it or they will do a quick check into the Director's affairs then what do you think will happen? Safety dictates that we keep all the essentials where we can monitor carefully who can maintain secrecy where required and monitor closely who is involved and a certain level of confidence in remaining a priority with our suppliers.

    Of course I am talking about an outdated theory which is only liable to be re-looked into when we find ourselves without boots or socks or something because the Chinese have put a "delay" on allowing things through customs because they don't want us upsetting someone they are doing business with.
     
  6. Hear what you're saying Kimmi, but is the argument of "We need an organic defence industry because we can't rely on external suppliers in time of conflict" still a valid one? After all, how do the Canadians /Aussies /anyone-else-without-a-large-homegrown-defence-industry manage.....??
     
  7. Not to distant past Belguim refused to sell us ammo due to a little misunderstanding with the argies in the South Atlantic
     
  8. Defence is about the only industry we have left!
     
  9. We design gold plated equipment that is unexportable…

    Challenger II: No one buys it, too expensive
    T45 DDG: No one buys it, too expensive
    T23 FFG: No one buys it, too expensive
    AS90: No one buys it, too expensive
    Army Lynx: No one buys it, too expensive

    Add your examples here>
     
  10. SF
    If I may, can I add:

    SA80
    Nimrod MRA4
    Merlin HM1
    ASTOR

    I'm sure there are plenty more!!!!
     
  11. Trans-sane

    Trans-sane LE Book Reviewer

    Well going back a little bit further:-

    Upholder class SSKs. All were sold to Canada at knock-down prices. Other than that no exports cos no one could afford it
    T42 Destroyers. Only 2 exported and they were to an military junta that invested an unreasonable ammount of GDP in arms. Oh, and they were used to train fast jet pilots that attacked oiur task force in 1982.
     
  12. Is anyone here knowledgeable enough to tell me why we shouldn't go down the Russian route of having separate Design Bureaus who compete to have their designs put into production at factories that are closely supervised / more or less run by the government itself?
     
  13. Firstly, I seem to remember the Russians came up with the Kalashnikov by this route. That seems to have been rather successful, and at an excellent price.

    Although I don't have any experience in procurement, I feel we could get a lot more for our money by not trying to specify something state-of-the-art which will, in any case, not be so by the time it is delivered. As an example, the Russians specified nice big, fat, FO mortar shells made of cast-iron which were dirt cheap to knock out and were bl00dy dangerous to be on the receiving end of, as they were larger calibre than anything we had.

    We also seem to remarkably stupid in not sourcing SAA from our own industrial suppliers, who could be made to compete reasonably on price and in return would have jobs for life, judging by the number of wars we have become involved with. The only problem with that, is that when we last did this, some enterprising traitorous swine in the MOD went and sold the good Radway Green stuff to foreigners, and then had to buy rolled-brass sh!t from Asia, which had a habit of exploding in the breech of the Sterlings as it was fired. Seem to remember getting a few bits in my neck as I turned away on one occasion.

    BTW, I take it the Radway Green site and all the machinery have been sold long ago?
     
  14. That's the beauty of the Russian system . . . the design bureaus (Mikoyan, Sukhoi, Izhmash et al) build and test their own prototypes, but once the design has been approved the government takes over responsibility for mass production and delivery.