Bloomberg News

U.K. Can Save $310 Million a Year on Defense Buying, Report Says

October 10, 2011

Oct. 10 (Bloomberg) -- The U.K. could save 200 million pounds ($310 million) a year if it updates rules on military procurement drawn up in 1968, a review commissioned by Prime Minister David Cameron’s government said today.

David Currie, the former dean of Cass Business School and a lawmaker in the upper House of Lords who carried out the review, said revised regulations for Ministry of Defense procurement from single sources -- where open competition is not possible on grounds of national security -- should ensure that there is greater transparency and that cost data are standardized.

“When Defense Minister Peter Luff asked me to undertake a review of the regulations surrounding single-source procurement of military equipment and services, it quickly became apparent that they needed to change,” Currie said in an e-mailed statement today. “There are sound reasons why single-source will continue to represent a significant part of total MOD procurement. It is thus essential that the governing regime for this activity is robust and fit for purpose.”

Currie’s review called for a more open relationship between the London-based ministry and manufacturers, the provision of incentives for companies to be more efficient and a simplification of procedures for small businesses. The findings of the review are now open to public consultation.

--Editors: Eddie Buckle, Andrew Atkinson.

To contact the reporter on this story: Thomas Penny in London at tpenny@bloomberg.net

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