21 July 2008 | Paul Snell
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has thrown its weight behind a programme to improve UK defence and aerospace supply chains.
The public sector body has signed up to the Twenty First Century Supply Chains (SC21) programme, developed by the Society of British Aerospace Companies to promote more collaborative working between buyers and vendors and make supply chains in the sector more competitive.
The scheme provides a framework for companies who sign up to accept a standard supplier accreditation of quality, commit to supplier development programmes and sign up to a code of practice governing relationships.
By signing up to the scheme the MoD will ensure its supply chain is open and transparent, takes account of whole life costs, and make sure business is conducted ethically.
Baroness Taylor, minister for Defence Equipment and Support, said the programme was a good fit with the department's Defence Industrial Strategy, which set out a 10-year buying plan for the UK military.
Russ Armitage, chairman of SC21, said in a statement: "The participation of the Ministry of Defence is another major step in securing the future of the UK's aerospace and defence industry through a high performance supply chain."
Companies who have already signed up to the programme, launched in 2006, include BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin UK, Qinetiq and Thales UK.