Any shortfall in cash earmarked for the governments’ plan to spend the UK out of a recession could be met by selling off state-owned assets and companies, according to today’s pre budget report.

Companies such as the Met Office, the Royal Mint, to the Land Registry and British Waterways could be sold off.

The government is planning to cut around £5bn of spending on the public sector, KPMG said.

Alan Downey, head of public services at KPMG in the UK, said: ‘These are painful expenditure cuts for the public sector. After 10 years of substantial, real term increases in UK public expenditure, the party is finally over.

'The key question however is whether that level of pain will be enough to claw back the dramatic increase of short term borrowing. Part of the shortfall could be met by the sale of assets and privatisation of government-owned bodies. Buried in the small print of the PBR is a commitment to review the status and ownership of a number of organisations, ranging from the Met Office and Royal Mint to the Land Registry and British Waterways.’