Action must be taken to counter the threat of defence cuts across Moray, according to the task force dedicated to protecting the area's RAF bases.
The group says measures to protect the future for the airbases cannot wait until the spring, when a Government decision is expected on the final fate of RAF Lossiemouth and RAF Kinloss.
As the fight to save them continues, agencies and groups are working to promote Moray’s assets, sustain business confidence and support staff.
The uncertainty created by the strategic defence announcements is creating a state of ‘limbo’ in the area.
George McIntyre Convener of Moray Council said: “The MoD has said it will be months before a final decision will be made about the future of the bases. However, we know that personnel and contractors at RAF Kinloss are already being told which jobs are threatened.
"While the MoD goes about this process behind the RAF gates, Moray and the community which has had the RAF at its heart for 70 years, is being left in limbo.”
“We have had no firm timescale from the MoD, there is no investment support in place from the Treasury, and measures needed to protect the region's future cannot wait until the Spring to be put in place.
“We know the excellent campaign from the Moray community has got the attention of national politicians and MoD officials. Now we need them to take action. Having announced the cancellation of the Nimrod there is a responsibility to protect our communities and our economy for the future.”
Calum MacPherson of HIE said: “The task force is focused on two strands of effort - supporting the campaign to keep the RAF in the area, and to do everything we can to reduce the impact of the proposed run down at Kinloss.
“The decision on Nimrod has been met with disbelief from many in the defence world. We have been told there is no hope of reversing that decision. The task force will continue to put forward the many arguments for keeping the RAF in Moray, but we must also look at how we sustain local confidence.
"Currently, we are working in the dark, but with the right information we can work with governments to develop the best responses to the challenges we all face."
Within RAF Kinloss the task force is already working to support those who may be affected. For those businesses or individuals outside of the bases who think they may be affected or who need help now for planning for the future the task force has set up a helpline on 08000 884884.