By David Bicknell
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has ruled out choosing a spin-off mutual as one of the three models being considered for a re-organisation of the key Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) organisation.
Campaign4Change recently received a tip-off from an MoD insider who was concerned that the mutuals option had been ruled out.
The MoD has confirmed that there is no mutuals route, and that its three options will be:
* A Trading Fund: where DE&S continues to be a part of the MoD but has a hard-charging regime. Its staff are civil service employees.
* An Executive Non-Departmental Public Body: where DE&S remains in the public sector. Staff are public sector employees but not civil servants.
* A Government Owned Contractor Operated (GOCO): A private sector organisation. Staff are private sector employees with potentially some government secondees.
Asked why the mutuals option had been overlooked, an MoD spokeswoman said, “Further to our conversation about the options that have been proposed for the future of DE&S, I can confirm that we’re not looking at mutuals. The reason for that is that simply, we do not consider it appropriate.
“We have considered a wide range of options for DE&S and centred analysis on three we believe will most suit the requirements of the organisation. We have kept all stakeholders, including across central Government, aware of this analysis.”
The MoD says the three options will be presented to ministers in due course who will decide on a preferred way forward.
Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) equips and supports the UK’s armed forces for current and future operations. Employing around 20,000 people, with a budget of some £14 billion, its headquarters is in Bristol with other sites across the UK and overseas.
DE&S acquires and supports equipment and services, including ships, aircraft, vehicles and weapons, information systems and satellite communications. As well as continuing to supply general requirements, food, clothing, medical and temporary accommodation, DE&S is also responsible for HM Naval Bases, the joint support chain and British Forces Post Office.