The government also announced that the Chief of Defense Staff, General Nick Carter, will remain in his post until the end of November instead of leaving in June as previously planned. A government statement said Carter’s expansion is designed to provide continuity to the military when carrying out the integrated defense, security, foreign policy and development aid review.
Carter was one of the key architects behind the review, which Prime Minister Boris Johnson said will spark a profound transformation in the military. The Prime Minister announced the government’s intention to conduct the review immediately after his victory in the 2019 general election.
The review, already delayed, is expected to determine the size and shape of the British military for years to come. Following its release on March 16, the Department of Defense will release details of a defense modernization move on March 22, where the army is expected to shoulder the brunt of capacity cuts, particularly on final strengths and armored vehicles. The cuts are intended to help fund the purchase of cutting-edge weapons in the fields of space, cyber, underwater and unmanned warfare.
“Gene. Sir Nick Carter will remain as Chief of Defense Staff during this critical defense period. His experience and expertise is key to modernizing defense functions, and his leadership in the implementation of the integrated review will ensure that the men and women of our armed forces are well prepared for tomorrow’s threats, ”said Secretary of Defense Ben Wallace.
The government announced late last year that it would increase the defense budget by £ 24.1 billion ($ 33.6 billion) over the next four years. Most of it goes towards equipment. With defense spending already heavily overstretched, capacity cuts are expected to balance the books while making room for investment in advanced sunrise technologies.
Carter became Chief of Defense in June 2018. The term of office is normally three years, but has been extended several times – most recently by Air Marshall Jock Stirrup, who was in office from 2006 to 2010.
The government plans to name Carter’s successor in the fall. Defense analysts say there is no clear front runner for the post among current chiefs of service.
Carter’s departure is postponed as the Department of Defense will lose its senior official Stephen Lovegrove. As permanent secretary to the Department of Defense, Lovegrove effectively holds the department’s wallets. Soon he will join the cabinet as the new national security advisor. His replacement has yet to be named.