Fox warning over MoD spending

By Alex Stevenson

Efficiency savings will not be sufficient to solve the Ministry of Defence’s spending problems, Liam Fox has warned.

The defence secretary told the Royal United Services Institute in central London that the department’s budget was “heavily committed” over the next four years and that the cost of equipment was continuing to rise above inflation.

“This shambolic approach to defence cannot continue,” he said.

“No matter how hard we bear down on the costs of administration and drive up efficiency, we cannot expect to bridge the gap by these means alone.

“The problem is structural so the response must be structural to put defence on a stable footing.”

Dr Fox said the forthcoming strategic defence and security review would reconfigure Britain’s armed forces “to meet the needs of the evolving security environment”.

He pledged to reform the MoD into “three pillars” focusing on strategy and policy, armed forces and procurement and estates.

These would provide “a more efficient and leaner centre where everybody knows what they’re responsible for and who they’re accountable to”.