UK lawmakers warned that "the UK Armed Forces will not be ready for a high-intensity war unless personnel and equipment shortages are addressed quickly".

Referring to personnel leaving the army, the House of Commons Defense Committee stated that these people are leaving faster than recruits and advised the government that the offer to these people should be "improved". 

The statement underlined that this vicious circle must be broken in order for the United Kingdom to face increasingly difficult threats. 

According to the British broadcaster BBC, the Ministry of Defense has confirmed that increasing recruitment and improving retention is a priority. 

In January, Britain's Chief of the General Staff, General Sir Patrick Sanders, called for the country to train a volunteer "citizen army" ready for a possible land war, warning that increasing the number of reservists alone "will not be enough".

Sanders highlighted the "threat from Russia" in the wake of the invasion of Ukraine, pointing to steps taken by other European countries to get their populations "ready for war".

He also called for more steps to equip and modernize the armed forces. 

Sir Patrick reminded that the number of professional ranks was around 100,000 in 2010 and has now fallen to 73,000, noting that the army needs to be larger in scale. 


Meanwhile, the Inter-Party Defense Committee's report titled "Are You Ready for War?" highlighted the problem of overload, which has a negative impact on the capacity of the armed forces, and said that whenever the armed forces are asked to act, they find a way, but even though it is "a matter of national pride", "overload has a negative impact on the pace of operations and readiness for high-intensity warfare, among other things".

MPs on the Committee said they were "increasingly concerned" about a possible "crisis" in the recruitment and retention of both regular and reserve personnel.This is all the more serious in an environment where operational demands are making it difficult to recover and train, they said. 

"It is not surprising that more people are leaving (the ranks of the army) than joining the armed forces," the Committee's report said. 

It also criticized that while the Committee acknowledged the problem and planned to address it, the government was not moving quickly enough to do so. 

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"Increasing recruitment and improving retention is a top priority," a Defense Ministry spokesperson said. 

"Our armed forces are always ready to protect and defend the UK and we continue to deliver on all our operational activities," the spokesperson said. 

Another concern raised in the report is that the £1.95 billion allocated for increasing ammunition stocks in the 2023 budget could be used to address existing resource shortfalls rather than renewing and increasing capabilities.

However, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Defense stated that £50 billion was spent on defense this year and that spending on defense equipment will rise to £288.6 billion over the next decade. 

The British government aims to increase Defense Ministry defense spending to 2.5 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).