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The Contributions Agency: The Newcastle Estate Development project

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, told Parliament today that the pioneering 31-year *Private Finance Initiative deal to redevelop the office accommodation of the Inland Revenue and Department of Social Security in Newcastle is likely to deliver the improved accommodation sought. This would be at a higher direct cost than continuing with … Read more

HM Customs and Excise: Improving VAT Assurance

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, today reported to Parliament on HM Customs and Excise’s collection of £29.6 billion VAT from the majority of the UK’s 1.6 million registered VAT traders. The Department’s strategy has been to shift auditing effort towards those traders presenting the highest risks to the revenue and, since … Read more

United Kingdom Passport Agency: The passport delays of Summer 1999

Delays in issuing passports earlier this year led to much anxiety and inconvenience for members of the public hoping to travel. By June, the Passport Agency had around 565,000 applications awaiting processing. Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, reported to Parliament today on the delays at the Agency during Summer 1999. Several … Read more

Modernising procurement

Sir John Bourn, Head of the National Audit Office, today reported to Parliament on Government procurement. Some 1,500 staff spend some £13billion each year on civil procurement across government. Procurement is therefore big business and getting it right is central to the management of any organisation. The report focuses on the scope for improved procurement … Read more

Examining the value for money of deals under the Private Finance Initiative

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, provided Parliament today with a ground breaking report explaining the National Audit Office’s approach to examining the value for money of deals under the Private Finance Initiative (PFI). Having already published eight reports on major privately financed projects Sir John said the time was now right … Read more

The management of Medical Equipment in NHS Acute Trusts in England

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, reported to Parliament today that NHS Acute Trusts in England held medical equipment with an estimated replacement value of some £3 billion. In 1996-97 they spent some £220 million on acquiring medical equipment annually and a further £120 million on maintenance. Figures for 1997-98 are similar. Medical … Read more

Office of gas supply: Giving Customers a Choice – The Introduction of Competition into the Domestic Gas Market

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, told Parliament today that the introduction of competition into the domestic gas market has benefited customers through lower prices, greater choice and better service. Some 20 million domestic customers currently spend around £6 billion a year on gas and so far over 4 million have switched … Read more