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UK defense ministry have no enough money to buy equipment: MPs warn

12 May 2018, 00:10 ( 10 Months ago)

DF-Xinhua Report
File Photo Xinhua

Britain's Ministry of Defense, which funds the country's military, could face a more than 28 billion U.S. dollar shortfall in the funding required to buy the equipment it says it needs, a committee of MPs warned Friday.

   A report by the Public Accounts Committee of the House of Commons found that uncertainty over an affordability gap reduces the department's ability to make informed decisions about defense.

   "The Ministry of Defense (MoD) simply does not have enough money to buy all the equipment it says it needs," the report warned starkly, adding its equipment plan for 2017 to 2027 is not realistic.

   Committee chair MP Meg Hillier said: "The MoD's inability to better quantify that affordability gap has consequences not just for its confirmed spending plans, but also its ability to prepare for serious challenges in national defense."

   It said a significant affordability gap has again opened up; with forecast costs at least 4.9 billion pounds (6.6 U.S. billion dollars), and potentially as much as 20.8 billion pounds, more than the 179.7 billion pounds budget.

   The report said the department was reluctant to present openly an assessment of the affordability gap and has failed to report transparently to parliament and the public about the financial risks it faces.

   "We are highly skeptical that the Modernizing Defense Program will be able to return the department to a balanced position," the report warned.