The average cost reduction across Government departments has come in at 19 per cent, rather the 25 per cent of departmental cuts initially expected.
In his closing statement delivering the comprehensive spending review, Chancellor George Osborne said the 19 per cent cuts across Government departments was less than the 20 per cent suggested by the Labour government ahead of the election.
He says the cost savings the Government has calculated, as well as a payment schedule outlining lower debt interest payments, mean that the cut to department budgets has come in lower than initially feared. He adds: “The decisions we have taken today bring sanity to our public finances.”
In response, Shadow Chancellor Alan Johnson said: “The suggestion that the cuts are less than ours is complete and utter nonsense.”