From SNP Westminster Media:
An SNP MP has slammed the Ministry of Defence (MOD) for its “absurdly wasteful” spending – arguing “only independence can end this chasm in our public finances, and improve Scotland’s defence procurement system”.
Dave Doogan MP has criticised the MOD for the “billions of pounds wasted on defence projects that have not come to fruition”, as well as blaming the UK government for its failure to deliver value-for-money for the taxpayer.
The UK is currently the highest percentage spender on infrastructure within the entire NATO alliance, but is second lowest when it comes to personnel spending.
Research from the House of Commons Library shows that, in recent years, the MOD paid £3.7 billion for the cancellation of the Nimrod MRA4 contract, as well as £400 million for the cancellation of the Warrior CSP contract – among a litany of other mothballed contracts worth tens of millions of pounds.
In addition, the MOD’s Equipment Plan is estimated to be overdrawn by up to £17 billion according to the National Audit Office.
Commenting, the MP for Angus said:
“The MOD has become absurdly wasteful with its spending of public funds, and the Tories in government have utterly failed to manage this over the last 11 years.
“This litany of contract cancellations makes for stark reading, with billions of pounds wasted on defence projects that have not come to fruition.
“Remarkably, the £200 million that the MOD are prepared to spend on a yacht is a drop in the ocean of wasteful spending which speaks volumes.
“The UK government has failed to meet any of the pressing security challenges facing Scotland, such as addressing the skills shortages in all branches of the Armed Forces, yet continue to fritter away billions of taxpayers’ money on dead-end projects, more weapons of mass destructions, and Royal yachts. All of these are things that Scotland could, and should, do without.
“Scotland cannot afford this level of wastefulness which is why only independence can end this chasm in our public finances and improve Scotland’s defence procurement system.
“With the full powers of independence, Scotland can be less frivolous with its defence spending, take full control of its defence system, and begin to create a more fair and secure future for its people.”
Defence Expenditure of NATO Countries: https://www.nato.int/nato_static_fl2014/assets/pdf/2021/3/pdf/210316-pr-2020-30-en.pdf
‘MOD accused of overspending as budget ‘black hole’ reaches £17bn’ – https://www.ft.com/content/e4126a00-a865-4912-b4bf-05ff845395ab
2012-13 annual report and accounts, under constructive losses, shows a £3.7 billion fee for the cancellation of Nimrod MRA4 – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/mod-annual-report-and-accounts-201213
The Committee report states that the MOD spent £400 million on the cancellation of Warrior CSP – https://committees.parliament.uk/publications/5081/documents/50325/default/