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UK's 372 billion-pound COVID spend a good estimate for now: Treasury official

·1-min read
View of the Treasury building in London

LONDON (Reuters) - The British finance ministry's top civil servant said on Thursday that an estimate of 372 billion pounds ($525 billion)for COVID-related government spending was fine for now, but was likely to change.

Earlier this month the National Audit Office, a government spending watchdog, estimated that government departments would spend around 372 billion pounds based on pandemic measures announced between February 2020 and the end of March 2021.

"It's a good, reliable snapshot as of today, but we would certainly expect - and I'm sure the NAO would expect - that number to change as we see what happens," Tom Scholar, the finance ministry's most senior civil servant, told a panel of lawmakers. ($1 = 0.7082 pounds)

(This story was refiled to clarify that the 372 billion pounds is for measures announced.)

(Reporting by Andy Bruce, Editing by Paul Sandle)

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