Osborne cuts GBP 7bn from welfare budget
20th October 2010
Welfare benefits are to be reduced by a further GBP 7 billion in order to control the UK's public spending deficit, George Osborne has announced.
The chancellor's Comprehensive Spending Review revealed that means-tested working-age benefits and tax credits are to be replaced by an integrated payment known as Universal Credit over the next two parliaments, in a bid to make the new savings.
Mr Osborne said making extra cuts on top of the GBP 11 billion of benefits savings that were announced in June's Budget is a necessary step to put welfare costs on an 'affordable footing'.
'In the massive public consultation we conducted over the summer, the overwhelming message we received was that the British people think it is fair to cut welfare bills in order to protect important public services,' the chancellor said in his speech.
The Comprehensive Spending Review also made a series of cuts to the budgets of other government departments, with the average reduction standing at 19 per cent. This is lower than many experts anticipated and was driven by the large savings made in the welfare budget.