Contract-signing for the £1bn Defence Fixed Telecommunications System has been held up because of additions to the specification required by the Ministry of Defence.
The contract, awarded to the BT-led consortium Inca, was expected to be completed in March.
`It’s a very complex deal,’ said Huw Rees, the programme director for Inca. `A lot of it’s the lack of experience on both sides with the private finance initiative. There were some technical issues and finance issues.’
Inca was selected as preferred supplier last October to provide a military telephone network for all the armed forces. The BT-led bid beat a Racal-led bid, despite intensive lobbying.
The latest delay has been attributed to the volume of work generated by the deal. It is not thought to have anything to do with the general election or Labour’s defence review. This is because DFTS will save the MoD money, unlike most military contracts.