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power station

The sale of the Government’s interest in British Energy

“The Government sold its stake in British Energy when energy prices were at a peak, and got a good price. The biggest priority for the Government was, however, to ensure new nuclear power stations could be built from the earliest possible date and with no public subsidy. Whether it will achieve this remains to be seen. The Department of Energy and Climate Change now needs to make real progress on its contingency plans should EDF be unwilling to build new nuclear power stations.”

Published:
22 Jan 2010
View of London over the Thames

Maintaining financial stability across the United Kingdom’s banking system

“It is difficult to imagine the scale of the consequences for the economy and society if major banks had been allowed to collapse. The Treasury was justified in using taxpayers’ money to safeguard savings and stabilise and restore confidence in the financial system.

 

“But the big question is what all of this will eventually cost the taxpayer. This will take time to answer. What we do know is that how the eventual sale of RBS and Lloyds is managed will be crucial to protecting the public interest. The structure of the UK banking system has changed beyond recognition. When it comes to selling its stakes in the banks, the government has to be mindful of the proceeds for the taxpayer but also of the implications for competition in the UK market, so that customers get a fair deal.

 

“As the crisis begins to subside, lessons must start to be learned. The authorities need to put formal arrangements in place to evaluate the effectiveness of the support provided to banks in order to inform future policy makers.”

Published:
4 Dec 2009
staircase symbolising HMRC estate

HM Revenue & Customs’ estate private finance deal eight years on

“This major contract has been significantly affected, for the contractor Mapeley in particular, by the current economic climate. Mapeley benefited when the property market was expanding but the economic downturn has made the contract more onerous. HMRC must take a significantly more astute commercial approach if it is to deliver value for money for the taxpayer.”

Published:
3 Dec 2009

Private Finance Recommendations Database

Reports produced by the House of Commons’ Committee of Public Accounts (the PAC) following hearings based on our PFI and PPP investigations include nearly 1000 recommendations.

We have collected these recommendations and the related Treasury responses into a PFI and PPP/Privatisation Recommendations database last updated: 19/06/2009.

Published:
8 Mar 2009
Report cover, showing modern school interior

The Building Schools for the Future Programme: Renewing the secondary school estate

“Building Schools for the Future is a highly ambitious £55 billion programme. Converting that ambition to reality requires robust planning, close cost control and making a success of complex long-term partnerships. Partnerships for Schools and the Department were too optimistic in their early plans though programme management has since improved. But it remains a real challenge, in difficult market conditions, to deliver the 250 schools a year that will be needed, to include all schools by 2020 as currently planned.”

Published:
12 Feb 2009
Report cover showing a Defence vehicle going through country side

Allocation and management of risk in Ministry of Defence PFI projects

“Most of the private finance projects in its portfolio of more than 50 have been delivered successfully by the Ministry of Defence. But the Department needs to be more alert to the risks that can emerge once the project is up and running, such as inaccurate performance reporting. It could also reduce procurement times by speeding up its decision-making, and by collecting better information at the outset on current and prospective use of the service and the condition of assets.”

Published:
30 Oct 2008
Report cover showing a modern train crossing Brunel's 1859 bridge

The Department for Transport – Letting Rail Franchises 2005-2007

“Taxpayers and passengers should benefit from changes made to the franchising process for passenger rail services. The Department for Transport has contracted to save the taxpayer money while improving service quality, but it will need to see that capacity increases are well-managed and timely if passengers are to expect less crowded and more reliable journeys.”

Published:
15 Oct 2008