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House of Commons Hansard
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07 December 2017
Volume 632
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4. What comparative assessment he has made of the operating costs of the National Audit Office and auditing bodies in other countries. [902811]

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The NAO is continually looking at how it can save money. The most recent audited financial accounts show that the NAO has reduced its net resource costs by 21% in real terms against its 2010-11 baseline. That is even while taking on a much greater role in local government at the request of Parliament.

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I am grateful for that answer. I have no doubt about the great work that the NAO does as our spending watchdog, but what more can my hon. Friend do to be assured that it is cost-effective itself?

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The commission constantly urges the NAO to make greater steps to reduce its costs. The NAO has been very successful, and it saves many times its own budget in looking at every other Department to ensure that we get good value for money. My hon. Friend makes a fair point that the NAO must lead the way in reducing its own staffing costs.