MoD wastes £450million in ONE YEAR: Defence officials blew a fortune on scrapped projects and accountancy blunders, report reveals
- Ministry of Defence lost more than £800,000 to VAT error in ‘fruitless payment’
- £231million was wasted as a result of scrapping hundreds of armoured carriers
- New figures show £450million was wasted by defence officials last year alone
- Ministers are yet to decide how much new money Ministry of Defence will get
Defence officials wasted £450million last year in scrapped projects, lost kit, training accidents and accountancy blunders.
Figures from the Ministry of Defence’s annual report reveal how more than £800,000 was lost to a VAT error in what was termed a ‘fruitless payment’.
The biggest waste of money was £231million as a result of scrapping hundreds of armoured carriers.
According to the report, blast-proof trucks, designed to withstand roadside explosives, have been removed from service under the Land Equipment Fleet Optimisation Programme. British troops are pictured above in Afghanistan in 2011
It also cost the Royal Navy a staggering £21.6million to withdraw minehunter HMS Quorn from service and sell it to Lithuania.
The shocking blunders come as the Ministry of Defence is fighting for more money so it can deliver on plans worked up as part of a major defence review.
The Integrated Review was due to conclude in the comings days but it has been delayed and ministers have yet to agree on how much new money the MoD will get.
Those in the department are becoming increasingly frustrated at the indecision surrounding the review.
According to the report, blast-proof trucks, designed to withstand roadside explosives, have been removed from service under the Land Equipment Fleet Optimisation Programme.
Nearly 750 platforms ordered for Afghanistan and Iraq, including the Mastiff, Ridgeback and Wolfhound, are being sold off.
Another significant write-off was the cutting back of the RAF’s fleet of Sentry surveillance aircraft to the tune of £147million.
In 2016, the six-strong fleet used against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq was grounded by an electrical fault.
So-called ‘constructive losses’ led to the taxpayer funding a £1.5million decision to buy a new Chinook training system which was then cancelled.
Five drones also crashed which cost £6million, while a power outage ruined medicine supplies worth £1.9million.
A £680,000 bill was also unpaid by a third party supplied with fuel.
Danielle Boxall, of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, told the Daily Mirror: ‘It is shocking. It’s time officials cut waste and showed more discipline with the public purse.’
An MOD spokesperson said: ‘We are committed to delivering value and have strengthened our processes including training, specialist finance staff and better technology.’
Figures from the Ministry of Defence’s annual report reveal how more than £800,000 was lost to a VAT error in what was termed a ‘fruitless payment’ [File photo]