The message is permeating through the government that come 2020, budget cuts will be made.

The instruction to departments to prepare scenarios in which their baseline funding is cut by 5%, 6% and 7% from 2020 to 2023 has helped focus minds on the tight fiscal position. So has the message to the ministers’ committee on the budget that the Treasury is looking for a cut to the budget about the size of 10% of the government salary bill...

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