Show Hide image

Rolls-Royce whistleblower first made claims six years ago

The company has been accused of bribery.

Dick Taylor has been attempting to blow the whistle on Rolls-Royce for six years, according to a report by the Financial Times. The former Rolls-Royce worker posted statements about bribery in the company on news sites back in 2006.

He accused the company of using a bribe of $20m and a Rolls-Royce car to the son of the former president of Indonesia to help close the deal on a contract.

Taylor was the company's chief service representative, now retired, and has since repeated the claims since then on a number of websites. Here's the Financial Times story:

But it took until this year and the prompting of the Serious Fraud Office for Rolls-Royce to investigate those allegations and hand them over to the regulator.

The SFO, which would not comment Sunday, began looking into Rolls-Royce more than a year ago and earlier this year told the company of its concerns of possible bribery and corruption by Rolls-Royce intermediaries in Indonesia and China. Rolls-Royce then ordered an outside law firm to investigate.

On Thursday the company announced it had found reasons for concern with regards to bribery and corruption by its intermediaries in Indonesia and China. It also said it found possible wrongdoing in other overseas markets, which it declined to name.


Getty Images.
Show Hide image

Is anyone prepared to solve the NHS funding crisis?

As long as the political taboo on raising taxes endures, the service will be in financial peril. 

It has long been clear that the NHS is in financial ill-health. But today's figures, conveniently delayed until after the Conservative conference, are still stunningly bad. The service ran a deficit of £930m between April and June (greater than the £820m recorded for the whole of the 2014/15 financial year) and is on course for a shortfall of at least £2bn this year - its worst position for a generation. 

Though often described as having been shielded from austerity, owing to its ring-fenced budget, the NHS is enduring the toughest spending settlement in its history. Since 1950, health spending has grown at an average annual rate of 4 per cent, but over the last parliament it rose by just 0.5 per cent. An ageing population, rising treatment costs and the social care crisis all mean that the NHS has to run merely to stand still. The Tories have pledged to provide £10bn more for the service but this still leaves £20bn of efficiency savings required. 

Speculation is now turning to whether George Osborne will provide an emergency injection of funds in the Autumn Statement on 25 November. But the long-term question is whether anyone is prepared to offer a sustainable solution to the crisis. Health experts argue that only a rise in general taxation (income tax, VAT, national insurance), patient charges or a hypothecated "health tax" will secure the future of a universal, high-quality service. But the political taboo against increasing taxes on all but the richest means no politician has ventured into this territory. Shadow health secretary Heidi Alexander has today called for the government to "find money urgently to get through the coming winter months". But the bigger question is whether, under Jeremy Corbyn, Labour is prepared to go beyond sticking-plaster solutions. 

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.