04 July 2002
The Ministry of Defence needs to make more cuts in its stocks, according to a National Audit Office (NAO) report.
The NAO found that the MoD had 10 years' worth of stock for two-thirds of items, valued at £12 billion, even after stocks of the ministry's 1,000 highest-value items had been cut by more than a quarter.
The NAO identified several cases of overstocking. The MoD owns 4,000 obsolete radiation detectors, worth £10 million.
It had also massively overvalued some items. More than a thousand brass nuts, valued in its inventory at £83 million, were really worth £1.17.
Sir John Bourn, head of the NAO, said: "Too much is still kept because information systems are poor, or 'just in case'."
The NAO claims that many items among the £2.7 billion worth of slow-moving stock are readily-available consumables.