The RAF has no spare cash or spare personnel.
This means, if we are to expand the conflict prevention activities conducted by the RAF and/or Army Air Corps, there has to be new sources of both funding and personnel.
The use of ex RAF and AAC personnel, sponsored reserves, contractors, other government department personnel and RN/Army/RAF reserves should all be considered as part of any personnel matrix. Given that the objective is build host nation capacity, the fundamental principle of using host nation personnel is central to success.
In cash terms, the Building Stability Overseas Strategy (BSOS) provides an obvious route to funding.
The overall conflict pool settlement was £683 million in financial year 2014-15, with peacekeeping at £444 million and the Conflict Pool at £329 million. The conflict pool allocations are shown in the below.
|Conflict Pool Allocations|
|Programme||Financial Year 2013-14 Allocation(£m)||Financial Year Allocation 2014-15 (£m)|
|Middle East and North Africa (MENA)||39||60*|
|Strengthening Alliances and Partnerships (SAP)||10||12|
|Early Action Facility (EAF)||20||20*|
|*£5 million has been pre-committed from the £20 million EAF to the MENA programme ** Includes over commitment of available resources by £3.3 million|
The Middle East and North Africa programme (MENA) included additional resources for the crises in Syria and Libya as well as their regional consequences. Lebanon, the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Yemen, Bahrain, Egypt, Tunisia and Iraq also received funding. The Africa programme included funding for Somalia, Nigeria, the Sahel region, North and South Sudan, Zimbabwe, East and Central Africa, and with the African Union.
The 2015 SDSR included provision for the £1.5 Billion Joint Security Fund and other changes to overseas development assistance parameters.
From the Commons Library a description of the funding landscape for confict prevention, Changing parameters of Overseas Development Assistance
In a significant move, ODA was now to be used to serve the national interest.
The Conflict, Security and Stability Fund starts up…
It is clear that the UK sees conflict prevention as a significant part of the remit of Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) and that funding will follow.
What does this tell us?
There is cash available for conflict prevention, serious cash, and that priorities or delivery mechanisms can be changed.