The Civil Service is urged to accelerate progress to get value for money after more than £3.4billion was saved in 2020-21 through cost cutting in Whitehall.
The Cabinet Office said better use of data and improved digital expertise were the ‘key drivers’ of savings, which included £138 million from the termination or prevention of fraudulent personal protective equipment contracts (EAR).
Simon Clarke, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, said the £3.4billion saved in 2020-21 shows the government “can deliver better results with the money we spend”, but “we know we we have to go further”.
“The new Chancellor’s Cabinet-level Efficiency and Value for Money Committee will spare no effort as we investigate all government spending to ensure we get the most out of it for the taxpayer,” said he added.
These numbers show that you don’t have to sacrifice quality to get better value, and I want to accelerate progress.
Other savings in 2020-21 included £10million from taking disability badges that were tampered with, stolen or belonged to people who died on the streets, and £14million from fraudulent rebound loans prevented.
The government also uncovered £25million in pension claims made on behalf of deceased people, £21million in illegal council tax reduction claims and £1.7million in people using travel at a reduced rate without qualifying.
Government Efficiency Minister Jacob Rees-Mogg called on the civil service to step up the efficiency drive.
He said: “Taxpayers have the right to expect every penny of their money to be accounted for before it is spent.
“These numbers show that you don’t have to sacrifice quality to get better value for money, and I want to accelerate progress.”
“We ensure that the public service meets key government priorities while ensuring the best possible value for taxpayers.”