Our role is to assess the outlook for the public finances and whether they are sustainable, based on current Government policy. To that end we have to forecast how much the Government is likely to spend, but it is not our job to assess whether that money will be spent sensibly or efficiently – Parliament has specifically stipulated that ‘the OBR should not provide normative commentary on the particular merits of government policies’. The National Audit Office scrutinises public spending for Parliament, including value-for-money, but its focus is generally on how money has been spent in the past rather than how it is likely to be spent in the future.