Under consideration PE2004: Abolish the use of Public Private Partnerships in Scotland
Calling on the Scottish Parliament to urge the Scottish Government to abolish the use of Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) and commit to a new model for financing and managing public infrastructure in Scotland which has safety, quality, value for money and accountability to the taxpayer at its heart.
Previous action taken
We met with Neil Findlay (MSP for Lothian at the time), who hosted the launch of our report “Rethinking Private Financing of Scottish Public Projects” at the Scottish Parliament.
We have also met with Ross Greer MSP, John Mason MSP, and staff from the Scottish Conservatives and Scottish Labour, as well as asking the Finance and Public Administration Committee to engage with the issue.
PPPs have saddled the Scottish public sector with high levels of debt, poor service provision, lack of accountability, and unsafe buildings.
Audit Scotland reviewed PPPs and found them expensive and in need of more oversight.
The UK Treasury has called the PPP model “inflexible and overly complex”, and the Office for Budget Responsibility has called the scheme a “source of significant fiscal risk to government”.
PPPs are not the right option for publicly financed projects because they result in:
Poor value for money: projects are highly lucrative for the private sector and limited public finances are poorly invested.
Declining service standards: taxpayers’ money is spent on assuring a profit for company shareholders rather than the best possible service and quality for the public.
A loss of accountability: details of PPP deals are protected by corporate confidentiality which hinders scrutiny of how corporations use taxpayers’ money.
It is for these reasons PPPs should be abolished.