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Departmental Public Expenditure

Volume 498: debated on Monday 2 November 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps his Department is taking to implement the efficiency recommendations of the Operational Efficiency Programme relating to his Department; and what training is available to (a) Ministers and (b) officials in his Department in respect of the delivery of value for money savings. (296054)

The MOD is firmly committed to delivering the recommendations of the Operational Efficiency Programme (OEP). I have been appointed Value for Money (VFM) Minster and am supported in this role by a board composed of the Minister for Strategic Defence Acquisition Reform, the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff, the Second Permanent Under-Secretary and the Directors General Finance and Strategy, ensuring senior ownership for driving efficiency throughout the Department. A single programme has been established to deliver the VFM agenda, encompassing existing work and initiatives from the OEP and the Public Value Programme. This includes benchmarking of Defence back office costs and a review of MOD assets, where progress will be reported at Pre-Budget Report 2009. In addition, a “VFM Team” has been formed across MOD business areas which supports individuals at all levels in the delivery of VFM savings. Specifically on OEP, departmental leads have been appointed for each of the work strands to implement the recommendations. Ministers, senior officers and officials are fully aware of the guiding OEP principles established by HM Treasury. Value for money is integral to all the work of the Department and a wide range of learning and development opportunities are available to assist with driving the VFM programme.