Spending freeze will save £3 billion

16 December 2010
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The UK government expects to cut spending by £3 billion in one year as a result of the measures introduced by the coalition administration.

The suspension on spending in consulting, ICT, recruitment, marketing and property introduced in May 2010 has already saved about £1 billion, the Cabinet Office said.

Renegotiated contracts with major suppliers will save around £800 million, said Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude. The government has halved its consultancy spending compared to the same period last year, a reduction of £300 million. And 60 per cent (£133 million) less was spent on marketing and advertising contracts in the first six months compared with the same period in 2009. The government also vacated 20 properties, spending £18 million less on rent.

There are some exceptions to the freeze within these categories that can be found on departmental websites.

The Cabinet Office has also published the Operational Efficiency Programme Benchmarking Report for April 2009 to May 2010 which it said highlighted the exceptionally bad quality of previous data.

“This reform programme has required a culture change in government, as the system is not set up to operate efficiently,” Maude said.

Robust spending data was needed for the government to be more business-like, he added. “There is no excuse for government not to produce the same standards of management information achieved by the best in the private sector.”

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