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U.K. MOD reveals $2.12B upgrade plan for Scottish bases

By Ryan Maass
U.K. MOD reveals $2.12B upgrade plan for Scottish bases
British defense officials say Scottish military bases will be home to several new defense capabilities by 2020. Pictured, a Royal Air Force Typhoon takes off from Lossiemouth, of the branch's three fast jet bases. U.K. Royal Air Force photo by Sgt. Neil Bryden

Feb. 27 (UPI) -- Britain's defense ministry will spend $2.12 billion to upgrade Scottish military bases, government officials announced.

The move was disclosed following a meeting between U.K. defense leaders in Edinburgh. U.K. defense secretary Michael Fallon says the upgrades are intended to prepare Scottish military bases to house several new defense capabilities by 2020.

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"Scotland is on the frontline of defending the United Kingdom from growing threats at sea, in the air, and on land," Fallon said in a press release. "Our commitment to the future of defense in Scotland is underlined by increasing investment in better infrastructure for the Armed Forces helping to keep us safe."

The upgrade package includes engineering investments for the HM Naval Base Clyde and enhanced runways and taxiways for the Lossiemouth Royal Air Force base. Lossiemouth is being adjusted to accommodate nine new P-8 maritime patrol aircraft and an additional Eurofighter Typhoon squadron.

The ministry says the plan supports roughly 11,000 Scottish industry jobs, and accounts for over 10 percent of the country's industrial base. Scottish businesses are supporting several major U.K. defense projects, including the construction of Queen Elizabeth carriers, Offshore Patrol Vessels, and Type 26 Global Combat Ships.

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