Britain’s armed forces brace for cuts

As featured in The Economist

UK Defence


The most recent defence review, in 2015, was ambitious both in its goals for spending on new kit and in finding the savings to help pay for it. A big chunk of those savings was to come from efficiency gains. Unsurprisingly, not all of those hoped-for efficiencies look likely to be realised. Malcolm Chalmers of the Royal United Services Institute, a defence and security think-tank, points out that, for example, the 30% saving on the civilian workforce that the Ministry of Defence has pencilled in can be fully achieved only through outsourcing, which may be cheaper but which still has to be paid for.