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MoD criticised for £6bn overspend on big defence projects

The much-delayed Nimrod aircraft cost £3.4bn to develop before it was scrapped to save an estimated £1.9bn in running costs over 10 years. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

The much-delayed Nimrod aircraft cost £3.4bn to develop before it was scrapped to save an estimated £1.9bn in running costs over 10 years. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

From today’s Guardian:

Britain’s 15 biggest defence projects are expected to cost £6bn more than first estimated and will be delayed by a combined total of 26 years, a parliamentary watchdog reports today.

Too often the taxpayer has had to pick up the bill for the Ministry of Defence underestimating the risks involved in procuring complex weapons systems, the Commons public accounts committee (PAC) says.

The committee identifies three large projects bedevilled by long delays and huge overspend. These include the repeatedly delayed Nimrod maritime patrol aircraft, upon which £3.4bn was spent before it was scrapped, to save an estimated £1.9bn in running costs over the next 10 years.

The MoD will incur further costs from cancelling contracts and substituting alternative capabilities. The committee has asked the National Audit Office to investigate the decision to scrap Nimrod aircraft as well as all of Britain’s Harrier jump-jets.

Read more on the Guardian Website

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