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Armed Forces: Discharges

Question for Ministry of Defence

UIN 165547, tabled on 9 March 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what information he holds on the number of non-UK born service personnel who have left HM Forces after (a) four, (b) five, (c) six, (d) seven, (e) eight, (f) nine, (g) 10, (h) 11 and (i) 12 years’ service.

Answered on

12 March 2021

The number of UK Regulars1 of non-UK nationality2, who outflowed3 from 1 April 2019 to 31 March 2020, who served from four to 12 years4 is shown in the table below.

Number of service personnel who have served:

4 Years

5 Years

6 Years

7 Years

8 Years

9 Years

10 Years

11 Years

12 Years











  1. The question has been interpreted as relating to removal of visa fees for non-UK to settle in the UK on discharge, which doesn't apply to the Irish or other nationalities. Therefore Non-UK Personnel are defined as Commonwealth UK Regular Personnel, Gurkhas and those Nepalese who have transferred out of the Brigade of Gurkhas to serve in the wider Armed Forces. This will differ from the Biannual Diversity Statistics, as it includes Gurkha personnel, and not the full list of Other Foreign Regulars
  2. Nationality on outlfow as recorded on the Joint Personnel Administration (JPA) system. This is not where they were recruited from nor does it filter for non-UK born personnel.
  3. Outflow is derived by month-on-month comparisons of strength. These figures include outflow to civil life and outflow to other non-serving and serving parts of the Armed Forces, excluding the UK Regular Forces. Personnel flowing from the Trained to the Untrained Strengths are not captured in this table.
  4. Length of service has been calculated using entry date. There are known problems with the entry date information extracted from Joint Personnel Administration (JPA). If personnel have transferred from Service to another service, have served under an alternative assignment type (e.g. Reserve Forces), are re-entrants or have transferred from Other Ranks to Officers, their entry date may correspond to any of these events. The resulting LoS may reflect their current period of service, include previous service, or it may be the time that has elapsed since they first joined the Armed Forces, irrespective of any break in service. It will invariably include time spent on untrained strength. Length of Service (Years) is calculated as full years of service completed on outflow.
  5. LOS on outflow can be affected by the relative size of intake in previous years, particularly in small populations.
  6. Figures in this table have been rounded to the nearest 10, though numbers ending in a “5” have been rounded to the nearest multiple of 20 to prevent the systematic bias caused by always rounding numbers upwards. This data is for the most recent financial year of 1 April 2019, to 30 March 2020.
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