Whitehall efficiency drive saves £5bn, says Maude
By Richard Johnstone | 9 August 2012
Government departments saved more than £5.5bn in 2011/12, including £1.5bn in staff costs, Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude revealed today.
The savings are around £500m more than predicted and more than the £3.75bn saved in 2010/11.
Maude said that the spending controls put in place by the Efficiency and Reform Group, which was formed in 2010, would now become permanent. They cover spending across government, including IT contracts, property, marketing and consultancy.
The independently audited savings include £1bn from the moratorium on consultancy spending and £200m by vacating some properties. This is more than double the £90m in savings related to the government estate achieved the year before.
‘There’s never an excuse for wasting taxpayers’ money in the way it was in the past, but given the size of the deficit this government inherited and the ongoing tough economic climate, we were determined to cut the fat from Whitehall,’ Maude said.
‘Because our controls on spending are working well and saving unprecedented amounts of money, I’m determined they will be a permanent feature of good governance.
‘Last year, this government beat its own prediction and saved a staggering £5.5bn from departmental expenditure, on top of the £3.75bn from our first year in office. The real question is: why were such savings never made before and why was so much taxpayers’ money squandered on things like unnecessary consultancy, wasteful marketing and underused property leases?’