The business department has put out a list of 119 successful bidders for £950m of public money through the regional growth fund. (A new vehicle which now plays part of the role of the wound-up RDAs.) On average this is more than £8m each.
The only downside is that you can’t see how much money each company or council is getting or – necessarily – what for. In fact there are 10 successful bids where no details whatsoever have been disclosed: even the names of the winning companies. Read more
Remember Lord Young? He is the former trade and industry secretary who was given the task of reviewing health and safety regulation for Number 10 last year. He was forced to resign last November, however, after telling a Telegraph journalist that many Britons had “never had it so good”, despite the economy being gripped by recession.
At the time, David Cameron said:
Obviously he is extremely embarrassed. He was very quick to retract completely what he said. It was unacceptable.
Just over a week after leaving office, Liam Fox has returned to the spotlight, giving an interview to BBC Bristol defending himself and attacking the media.
Talking about his meeting in Dubai, attended by Adam Werritty but no civil servant, Fox said:
I think it was really just a mistake not to have somebody there but… we were sitting in a coffee lounge in a hotel, it was hardly a high security meeting.
But nonetheless, given this was a potential defence supplier – not as it turns out an actual defence supplier – it still should have had somebody there. It’s very easy to be careless but you pay a price for it.