The average annual return on the sale of equity in UK PPP project companies was 29% between 1998-2012 – twice the 12%-15% rate of return in PPP business cases at financial close of projects. The excess profit could be £2.65bn, all of which benefits private sector companies. This report exposes the real level of profiteering in PFI projects and shows how the government’s new PFI model, Private Finance 2, does nothing to address the profiteering or lack of transparency. Includes a Global database of PPP equity transactions. Also ESSU UK PPP Equity database can be download:
A paper written for Studies in Social Services, Li Bing, Vice Professor, Department of Sociology, Beijing Administrative College, China. Social services are at the forefront of the continued neoliberal transformation of public services and the welfare state in the UK. The paper applies the In Place of Austerity framework to examine the changes in social services. Paper in English and Chinese.
This Barnet UNISON Briefing examines the London Borough of Barnet’s plan to allocate just 2.5% client costs in the planned outsourcing of planning, environment health, trading standards, highways planning and cemeteries. The amount allocated would hardly be adequate to fund contract management and monitoring, leaving nothing to fund other client functions. It discusses the effects of Barnet Council’s ‘thin client’ plans, commissioning and client responsibilities, resources required for contract management and monitoring and the consequences of under-resourcing the client function.
The London Borough of Barnet signed a £100m 25-year PFI street lighting contract with Barnet Lighting Services Limited (Bouygues Construction and Mill Group infrastructure fund) in April 2006. This Briefing details the delays and performance failures by the private contractor, the lack of audit despite the high risks and cost increases borne by the Council, and the lack of regular, comprehensive and publicly available monitoring reports.
Cutting through the coalition government’s rhetoric of localism and ‘community rights’, Dexter Whitfield exposes a strategy to further destabilise and fracture public provision, accelerating marketisation and privatisation.
Cathy Davis, Department of Environment and Life Sciences, University of Salford, UK in Housing Studies, 2012: “…the volume provides a wealth of detail about how neoliberalist approaches are subverting and replacing state provision, predominantly in the UK as well as other Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries. Three introductory chapters outline the ‘deepening crisis’ from 2007–2008; the continuing ‘neoliberal transformation’ of welfare state services and the growth of corporate welfare.” http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02673037.2012.655041
The Mutation of Privatisation: A critical assessment of new community and individual rights, European Services Strategy Unit – Research Report No. 5, Dexter Whitfield – has been published by Spokesman Books, ISBN 978-0-85124-817-2, price £8.95, order online:
In the mid-1980s, prompted by the passing of Single European Act, the European Union embarked upon an ambitious programme of liberalisation to complete the Single Market. This included the opening up of many national industries to pan-European competition. EU public procurement law has been a crucial pillar to this agenda as EU institutions have sought to encourage cross-border, pan-European purchasing of public contracts. The paper examines the scope of EU procurement law, public markets vs public services, UK experience of outsourcing, PPPs and employment issues.
New community rights to bid, buy, build, challenge and provide are enshrined in legislation and Coalition policy. The government is also extending existing individual rights to buy and to personal budgets. This paper examines the objectives and scope of the new community rights and proposes a typology of public sector reform rights. It highlights the fundamental conflicts between ‘rights’, ‘choice’ and ‘contract’ cultures and localism. It assesses the conflicts and contradictions between community and commissioning, participation and empowerment, and the impact on democratic accountability, public finance, employment, equalities, the changing role of the state and community, voluntary and non-profit organisations. Includes a typology of rights, the new community rights, new pathways to privatisation and the essence of a contract culture.
“This is not so much a ‘hollowing out’ of the state, but a fundamental redirection to finance and manage markets and collusion in the deepening of corporate welfare.” Chartist, July/August 2012.