Asset sales and privatisation
Government sell assets for many reasons. To ensure the taxpayer receives value for money from privatisations and asset sales, government first needs to assess the value generated through holding onto an asset versus selling it. If government does decide to sell, it is important to consider a range of factors, including: its valuation approach, whether any restructuring of the asset is required to maximise sales return, market conditions at the time of the proposed sale, the design and management of any sale process, bidder dynamics during a sale process, and the benefits versus costs of any reasonable alternatives to the sale.
Following the 2015 election, the government has announced plans to divest of a number of assets, which the Office for Budget Responsibility estimates (at July 2015) will result in proceeds of £62.6 billion. These assets are: a portion of the student loans portfolio; the remaining shares in Lloyds Banking Group; a portion of the mortgage portfolio in UK Asset Resolution Limited and a proportion of its Royal Bank of Scotland shares. We have reported on privatisations and asset sales after they have completed and we may return to this theme as the divestiture programme unfolds.