Call to end arms subsidies

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Britain's defence industry received more than £500m for R&D out of a total of £700m of export subsidies provided by the Government between 2009-2010, according to new research released by the Campaign Against Arms Trade.

The figures have been compiled for CAAT by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute to back up its claims that the UK's defence industry – worth around £9.5bn a year in exports – is unfairly subsidised in a variety of ways ranging from direct assistance, official visits, export credits, the Ministry of Defence's procurement policy, military attachés as well as the use of armed forces for promotion.

Sipri estimated that UK bodies, such as the Defence & Security Organisation, indirectly subsidises R&D of £562.4m in 2010, the biggest share of the overall £698.9m. A spokesman for CAAT said: "This support should be going to other industries."