Tuesday, 29 September 2020

Ceisteanna (429)

Patrick Costello

Ceist:

429. Deputy Patrick Costello asked the Minister for Defence the estimated full-year cost of increasing the Reserve Defence Force from 2,330 to 4,500. [26855/20]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Defence)

The establishment of the Army Reserve (AR) and Naval Service Reserve (NSR) is 4,069 personnel. The current effective strength is 1624 personnel, as at end August 2020.

Expenditure relating to the cost of the AR and NSR is drawn from a range of subheads. Subhead A.5 of the Defence Vote provides for a budget of €2.15 million of which €2.068 million is allocated for paid training for members of the AR and NSR. This allocation will provide seven days annual paid training for each effective member of the AR and NSR. The budget also provides for fourteen days paid training for all additional personnel recruited to the AR and NSR in 2020, along with career and specialist courses for selected members of the Reserve in line with Reserve priorities. This provision is sufficient having regard to the existing strength of the RDF and the voluntary nature of Reserve training and can be adjusted if required.

Providing for numbers beyond the current establishment would require consideration of the capability requirements underpinning such an increase, and as assessment of the associated cost implications which, as with the PDF, would include personnel and equipment costs. The Department does not retain such costings.