Now Royal Navy faces sub shortage

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THE Royal Navy faces a shortage of attack submarines as a result of the government’s defence cuts, the Whitehall spending watchdog warned today.

The National Audit Office said delays to the new Astute class subs will leave Britain without enough submarines for operations during the next decade while adding £200 million to the total cost of the programme.

The NAO said decisions taken by the MoD to balance its budget last year had contributed to a £466 million increase in the cost of the 15 largest military equipment projects over the past year.

Margaret Hodge, the chairman of the Commons Public Accounts Committee, said: ‘Delaying projects and reducing what they deliver are not sensible ways to invest in defence capability.’

The coalition government has consistently argued it had to make difficult decisions to deal with a £38bn black hole in the MoD budget left by Labour.