Show Hide image

Osborne sets out £6bn spending cuts

Freeze on Whitehall recruitment, while Vince Cable's business department is to cut £900m this year.

Vince Cable's business department will face the deepest cuts, as the government sets out where the £6bn of spending cuts this year will come from.

Cable will cut £900m from his department over the next nine months. These savings are expected to include the axeing of quangos and certain regional development agencies, and binning some grants and loans established by his predecessor, Lord Mandelson.

The net loss to the department will be £700m, the largest of any Whitehall department. Reportedly, Cable is satisfied with this as he questioned many of Mandelson's spending decisions.

George Osborne and his Liberal Democrat deputy, David Laws, are to set out their initial savings of £6bn today.

The Chancellor will announce a freeze on hiring civil servants, and strict restrictions on hiring across the public sector. Budgets for IT, property, and advertising are expected to be cut, while some quangos could be abolished.

The government claims it is imperative that the UK's large budget deficit is cut with immediate effect.

This moves comes ahead of the emergency Budget, expected on 22 June.