120. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Defence if there will be a recruitment drive for the Naval Service this year; if so, if he will provide details of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 26754/15 asked on 02 Jul 2015)

Minister for Defence (Deputy Simon Coveney): The Government is committed to maintaining the stabilised strength of the Permanent Defence Force at 9,500 personnel, comprising of 7,520 Army, 886 Air Corps and 1,094 Naval Service. Targeted recruitment has taken place so as to maintain the level of 9,500 personnel and to ensure the operational capacity of the Defence Forces. A recruitment competition for General Service Recruits for the Naval Service took place from 6 March 2015 to 27 March 2015. The selection process for this competition is progressing and it is planned to recruit 40 personnel from this panel in September 2015 and a further 40 from the same panel in December 2015.

A recruitment competition for Naval Service Cadetships took place from 10 April 2015 to 1 May 2015 for Naval Service Operations Branch, Naval Service Electrical Engineering Branch and Naval Service Marine Engineering Branch. The selection process for this competition is also progressing and induction is scheduled to take place in September 2015 and it is planned to induct 15 Cadets from this panel.