The government has vowed to better control its spending, by ensuring it gathers more consistent and standardised data from departments.

The Treasury has announced it will enforce proper monitoring of spending data within departments, as well as ensuring they share that data centrally.

The information being shared was “neither timely nor robust”, the Treasury said in a policy document called ‘Improving Spending Control’.

Data needed to be reconciled between the current Combined Online Information System (Coins) and its future replacement, the Online System for Central Accounting and Reporting (Oscar), it said.

Danny Alexander, chief secretary to the Treasury, said: “For too long financial management in Government has been stifled by poor information sharing and poor incentives. That has to change.

“From now on, all departments must monitor and share spending information with the Treasury on a monthly basis. And that data must be consistent.”

Delegated responsibility for spending “cannot be an excuse” to hide the data, he said.