Jim Murphy MP, Labour’s Shadow Defence Secretary, in response to the National Audit Office report on Ministry of Defence Carrier Strike, said:
“This report is confirmation that the defence review was led by the search for short-term cuts not our nation's strategic defence needs. It is not an endorsement but an indictment. The assumptions on which the Government’s rushed review was based were fundamentally flawed. Ministers sought savings they could not find, made estimations that have not been met and are engaged in events they did not foresee.
"The Secretary of State spent as much time in Opposition agreeing to our spending plans and demanding greater spending on the military as he has done in Government providing them with less.
“This damning report demonstrates the negligence Ministers have shown towards the accounting decisions made in the rushed defence review. Given the depth of concern over the MoD budget it now finally must be time for Ministers think again and genuinely reconsider the out of date, Treasury-led defence review.
“It is now clear the Government has created their own multi-million pound black hole in the defence budget with an uncosted carrier programme, which could be in jeopardy. They must now come clean as to whether they will fully fund the programme, how much this will cost and explain the impact on the wider equipment programme and defence budget.”