Govt flagship projects at risk

An annual report on the progress of the government's largest projects has warned that 32 of them may never come to fruition. The Universal Credit system and West Coast Main Line are among those projects that come in for criticism.

More than a quarter of major spending projects at risk

The Major Projects Authority assessed 191 spending programmes and rated them according to its 'traffic light' system:

Chart showing how major government spending programmes are rated on the 'traffic light' system
Chart showing how major government spending programmes are rated on the 'traffic light' system Credit: Major Projects Authority

Projects rated 'red' means that “successful delivery of the project appears to be unachievable,” while red/amber means that “successful delivery of the project is in doubt" and "urgent action is needed".

Cabinet Office welcomes report on major projects

Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude has welcomed a report that concludes that more than 30 of the government's flagship projects are at risk of never coming off:

Since the general election we have got things back on track and are equipping the civil servants with the skills they need.

There's much more to do but thanks to the work of excellent officials we now expect to double the success rate of major projects, compared with the figures from 2010.

– francis maude, cabinet office minister

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Report: 32 flagship projects may never happen

More than 30 of the coalition's flagship projects, including the HS2 rail link and the Universal Credit system, are at risk of never come to fruition, according to a government report.

A section of a new Royal Navy aircraft carrier is transported through the Firth of Forth
A section of a new Royal Navy aircraft carrier is transported through the Firth of Forth Credit: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

The Major Projects Authority (MPA) was set up in 2010 to help governments deliver on large projects, and its annual report rates progress using a 'traffic light' system.

Its latest report gives a 'red light' to the construction of two £7 billion aircraft carriers and the West Coast Main Line scheme, among six other schemes.

Some 23 other projects, which include the HS2 high-speed rail network and Universal Credit, were given Amber/red ratings, meaning that urgent action is required.

See the full report here.