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+++ Vince Cable proposes cuts worth £14 Billion +++

September 15th, 2009 Posted in Economics by

The Guardian has the story.

And unlike the Tories or Labour he’s saying exactly where it’s going to come from.

Nine specific areas of potential savings are identified as a start to a radical programme of reform. The main proposals are:

> Zero growth overall for public sector pay (saving £2.4 billion a year), a 25 per cent reduction in the total pay bill of staff earning over £100,000 and a salary freeze and end of bonuses for the civil service (saving £200 million a year).

> Tapering the family element of the tax credit – saving £1.35 billion.

> A radical review of public sector pensions with the view to moving to higher employee contributions and later retirement ages. There is currently a £28 billion subsidy to unfunded schemes.

> Scrapping several major IT systems including the ID card scheme (£5 billion over 10 years), Contactpoint (£200 million over 5 years), the NHS IT scheme (£250 million over the next 5 years) and the proposed “super database” (£6 billion).

> Curbing “industrial policy”, including scrapping Regional Development Agencies (£2.3 billion annually) and EGCD subsidies (£100 million annually) and reducing (by at least half) the Train to Gain and Skills Councils budgets (£990 million together a year).

> Reforming the National Health Service, by reducing the centralisation and over-administration – starting by scrapping Strategic Health Authorities (£200 million a year) – by strengthening commissioning and with “supply side reform” – in particular tariff reform could save around £2 billion a year.

> Curbing the centralisation in education, by cutting national strategies and scrapping quangos – saving around £600 million a year.

> Reducing the amount of waste in the defence procurement process, including scrapping the Eurofighter and Tranche 3 (£5 billion over 6 years), the A400M (total cost £22 billion), Nimrod MRA4, the Defence Training Review contract (£13 billion over 25 years) and the Trident submarine successor (£70 billion over 25 years).

> Examining possible future public sector asset sales, including some aspects of the Highways Agency (land value of £80 billion) and intangibles such as spectrum, landing rights and emissions trading.

This is an excellent move by Cable. This document proves that he is the only individual to be trusted with the economy. Darling and Osbourne are simply not in the same league. His plans are detailed and the onus is now on the Tories and Labour to be specific and honest about their plans right before Conference season.

6 Responses to “+++ Vince Cable proposes cuts worth £14 Billion +++”

  1. Ben Says:

    Good move, definitely better than Camerons plans to cut spending by £120 million.

    I’d still rather see plans to cut spending by at least 100 billion though, but I suppose people ought to be eased into public spending cuts. Does Vince Cable still support free tuition fees, EU membership etc which would undermine the cuts hes proposing?

  2. Kasch Says:

    Vince Cable you badass.
    I hope the media circulate this properly

  3. Stu Says:

    Alternatively, it shows Vince Cable is a little naive, revealing his game plan this long before an election and pointing Labour at areas they can make cuts, when they’ve got plenty of time to steal the policies and sell them as their own (modified and worsened, of course).

    Just a thought.

  4. Giles Says:

    Normally, I would agree with Stu, but on this one:

    a) I don’t think that these fall in the category of ‘ideas that I wish I’d thought of’, like, say, a per-aircraft tax; it’s not like Labour strategists might be slapping their foreheads and going ‘Damn! Why didn’t WE think of dismantling the NHS IT system!’

    b) Soon, even the bored public will start noticing that only one party is being even half-way candid about spending cuts. This may eventually rebound on the Lib Dems.

    Brown’s speech ducked the issue, again; the Cameroons are being honest about salad; Vince stands out.

  5. Brown’s TUC speech – a policy wonk not a rhetorician « Freethinking Economist Says:

    […] will really o in terms of cutting, apart from talk in generalities. Compare and contrast with how Vince Cable has actually come out with some cuts.  Nothing like enough of course, but it puts the other parties to […]

  6. GMB Says:

    All I have to say about this is