MoD is accused of a 'lack of cost control' after revelation Deloitte was paid £14.8m to advise on reforms

Accountancy firm was hired to help preparations for an overhaul of the military's vast property and land estates

The Ministry of Defence has been accused of a "lack of cost control" in its efforts to overhaul the management of Britain's barracks, training grounds and bases.

Industry insiders and leading politicians were shocked to discover that Deloitte, one of the UK's Big Four accountancy firms, was paid £14.8m in 2012-13 for advising the MoD on reforms to the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO).

That is four times more than the MoD's second highest-paid consultant, EY, received for advice on another part of the MoD, Logistics Commodities and Services, which looks after everyday items such as food. The news emerges just days after the Public Accounts Committee found that the MoD was spending £400m a year on consultants owing to departmental skills shortages.

Deloitte was hired to help the MoD's preparations for an overhaul of the military's vast property and land estates. In March, the contractor Capita was awarded the £400m deal, with ministers hoping the firm's private-sector nous would result in hundreds of millions of savings.

The consultancy figures, revealed by the Defence minister Anna Soubry in a parliamentary answer, led to calls yesterday for a full explanation of how Deloitte deserved that hefty fee. The shadow Secretary of State for Defence, Vernon Coaker, said: "The Government should outline what this money was spent on and explain why Deloitte was paid such a staggering amount more than any other consultancy firm."

A source at one of the country's leading defence firms added: "That looks way over budget. It's another example of a lack of cost control at the MoD."

When Deloitte's contract was awarded, the source said, the fee was supposed to be closer to £5m. But a source close to Deloitte argued the total also included other contracts related to DIO awarded later.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, the leading law firm, was also paid nearly £2.7m for its work on DIO in 2012-13. The MoD's total payments to legal outfits came to £28m, up from £25m the previous year.

A MoD spokesperson said: "The support of these highly specialised consultants with niche skills not available within the MoD is helping to radically transform the department so it's more efficient.

"Their independent advice must be considered in the context of the £3.3bn invested in infrastructure each year and will ensure this transformation takes place smoothly and efficiently aiming to secure savings of up to £350m a year for taxpayers in the future."

Defence has proved to be lucrative work for Deloitte. The accounting giant also received more than £2m for assistance on a study into the future of the army.

Deloitte is believed to be one of the firms longlisted to help run part of Defence Equipment and Support, the £14bn-budget agency that buys the armed forces' tanks, fighter jets and battle-gear.

The Secretary of State for Defence, Philip Hammond, has been determined to get the private sector to run as much of this agency as possible and is starting by outsourcing what is described as project delivery – making sure that the Government does not overpay for military kit.

Other firms that are believed to be on this long list, which could be published this week, include the US giants Bechtel and Jacobs.

News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Sport
Danny Welbeck's Manchester United future is in doubt
footballGunners confirm signing from Manchester United
Sport
footballStriker has moved on loan for the remainder of the season
Sport
footballFeaturing Bart Simpson
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
New Articles
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
tv
News
Kelly Brook
peopleA spokesperson said the support group was 'extremely disappointed'
News
The five geckos were launched into space to find out about the effects of weightlessness on the creatures’ sex lives
i100
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Sport
Andy Murray celebrates a shot while playing Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
TennisWin sets up blockbuster US Open quarter-final against Djokovic
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
booksRiddling trilogy could net you $3m
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
News
news Video - hailed as 'most original' since Benedict Cumberbatch's
News
i100
Life and Style
The longer David Sedaris had his Fitbit, the further afield his walks took him through the West Sussex countryside
lifeDavid Sedaris: What I learnt from my fitness tracker about the world
Arts and Entertainment
Word master: Self holds up a copy of his novel ‘Umbrella’
booksUnlike 'talented mediocrity' George Orwell, you must approach this writer dictionary in hand
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SQL Implementation Consultant (VB,C#, SQL, Java, Eclipse, integ

£40000 - £50000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: SQL Impl...

SQL Technical Implementation Consultant (Java, BA, Oracle, VBA)

£45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: SQL Technical ...

Head of IT (Windows, Server, VMware, SAN, Fidessa, Equities)

£85000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Head of IT (Windows, Server, VMware, SAN, ...

Lead C# Developer (.Net, nHibernate, MVC, SQL) Surrey

£55000 - £60000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Lead C# Develo...

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering