September 14, 2009

Mandleson calls for constraint, not cuts

British Business Secretary Peter Mandelson said the government would re-examine spending across the board, advocating constraint, not cuts.

In a BBC Radio interview, Mandelson said, there are wise ways to go about accepting that we are entering a period of public spending constraint ... in which we have got to be wise spenders and not big spenders.

Everything is going to have to be examined, from public services to defense projects. But, instead of cuts, he said, that will mean stepping up efficiency savings "¦ accelerating public service reforms "¦ (and) committing to far-reaching asset sales, Mandelson said.

It would not be right to turn the remarkable and necessary period of catch-up in public service provision "¦ into some kind of eternal doctrine: That social democracy is about high growth in public spending for its own sake, The Times of London reported Mandelson said.

Shadow Business Secretary Ken Clarke said, every politician is going to try to protect front line services, there is no party unique to that. But Clarke said the Labor party, doesn't know where cuts will be. They won't use the word in public so it is difficult, he said.