Government spending cuts comment made 'off the cuff'
Thursday 21 June 2012
Downing Street sought today to play down a warning by Britain's most senior civil servant that the country could be facing a decade of spending cuts.
Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood has said the Government is just 25% of the way through its austerity programme.
Speaking to civil servants in Westminster last night, he warned that spending restraint could last "seven, eight, maybe 10 years".
A No 10 spokeswoman said his "off-the-cuff remarks" referred to the future shape of the Civil Service and were fully in line with Government policy.
"He was talking very much in the context of Civil Service reform," the spokeswoman said.
"He was not trying to predict what spending down the track might look like. Sir Jeremy was being off the cuff. He was not setting out a different policy."
Chancellor George Osborne announced in his Autumn Statement that public spending cuts would continue to 2017 - two years into the next parliament.
However, Sir Jeremy's comments appeared to imply that - for the Civil Service at least - austerity measures could continue for the whole of the next parliament to 2020.
- 1 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 2 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
- 3 The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
- 4 Why you're almost certainly more like your father than your mother
- 5 Westboro Baptist Church couldn't picket Leonard Nimoy's funeral because they didn't know where it was
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Nigel Farage promises Ukip will not 'stigmatise' would-be migrants – and says he wants 'everyone to speak the same language'
Ex-head of MI6: 'We shouldn't kid ourselves that Russia is on a path to democracy'
Most people think legal tax avoidance is just as wrong as illegal tax evasion, poll suggests
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are an award-winning digit...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior VMware Platform En...
£10000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...
£17000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...