Billions saved by planned 2015 Afghan withdrawal

Tim Wallace
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BRITAIN’S spending on its military mission in Afghanistan will be £2.4bn less than expected in the years leading to 2015, George Osborne announced yesterday.

“In line with the process of transition to Afghan-led security and the government announcement that UK combat operations in Afghanistan will cease by the end of 2014, the Special Reserve provision for military operations will be reduced by £2.4 billion over the Spending Review 2010 period,” the budget explained.

However, another £605m will be spent on “urgent operational equipment” in the coming financial year and £100m will be spent on improving accommodation for up to 1,275 military personnel.

Furthermore, 9,500 deployed personnel will receive a 100 per cent council tax rebate, up from the 50 per cent they now receive, at a cost of £3m. The families welfare grant will also be doubled, at a cost of £2m, to help the relatives of 20,000.