Below is the text of Mr Major’s written Parliamentary Answer on Public Sector Expenditure on 15th November 1988.
Mr. Ralph Howell To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will publish a table showing the total expenditure and total estimated expenditure on wages, salaries and pensions in the public sector for 1970, 1979, 1984 and 1988; and what percentage of (a) gross domestic product and (b) public expenditure these figures represent.
Mr. Major The latest available information on expenditure on public service pay (including pensions), which is consistent with figures published in the 1988 public expenditure White Paper (Cm. 288), is given in the table. Corresponding figures for years prior to 1982-83 are not readily available on a consistent basis. Although some estimated outturn figures for 1988-89 were published recently in the autumn statement a breakdown of these figures by economic category will not be available until the publication of the 1989 White Paper.
1984–85 outturn | 1988–89 plans
Expenditure on public services pay included in the public expenditure planning total (£ million) 40,944 | 51,885
As a percentage of
(a) General government expenditure (excluding privatisation proceeds) 27 | 27.5
(b) Gross domestic product 12.5 | 11.5