Richard Lochhead

Moray SNP News



Moray’s MP Angus Robertson has expressed his grave concern at the escalating cost of Trident nuclear weapons on the River Clyde – before a single vote has been taken in the House of Commons to enable it.

Figures from the House of Commons Library suggest that nearly £5 billion has already been spent on what the Ministry of Defence (MoD) describe as the ‘concept phase’ and the ‘assessment phase‘.

The SNP has revealed that the total estimated costs of these preparatory phases are now running at a massive £4.8 billion.

The concept phase had an allocated spend of £905 million and the assessment phase initially had an allocated spend of £3.3 billion. However, the 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) confirmed that a further £600 million would be spent during the design phase of the programme prior to taking the programme forward in 2016, amounting to £3.9 billion in those initial phases.  As the programme moves into the next phase the MOD will have spent an estimated £4.8 billion on the Trident replacement programme.

Angus Robertson MP said:

"People will be rightly shocked that before the government has even bothered to put this to a vote in the House of Commons – they are just pushing ahead, spending billions and billions of taxpayers money on preparing for these obscene and redundant weapons.

"A billion here - a billion there - all based on the arrogant assumption that parliament will do what the Tories want and at a time when austerity cuts are deep and unending.

“The SNP has led the way in opposing Trident at Westminster. This unusable weapons system is estimated to have a final cost of over 160 billion pounds.

"This cost would be indefensible under any circumstances – but at a time of deep austerity and swingeing cuts – it is completely unacceptable.

“The spending of billions of pounds on Trident while people use foodbanks and while our budgets for public services are cut by the UK Government is frankly sickening.”