Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Why is National copying Australia’s failed highway PPPs?

6 September 2012

Why is National copying Australia’s failed highway PPPs?

Public-Private Partnerships to build highway projects have been expensive failures in Australia, with the public bearing the cost, and National should not be looking to copy this failed model, Green Party transport spokesperson Julie Anne Genter said today.

Research compiled for the Greens shows that Public-Private Partnership (PPP) highway projects in Australia have seen cost blow-outs and below-forecast traffic volumes. Private companies in PPPs have collapsed and taxpayers have had to bail out the failed projects.

New Zealand Transport Agency board papers obtained by the Green Party show that the National Government is well-advanced in its plans to use PPPs to build some of its uneconomic highway projects.

“Why would we want to copy Australia and use PPPs to fund highways when they have been such a dismal failure over there?” said Ms Genter.

“In Australia, the history of PPP highway projects has been cost blow-outs, lower than expected traffic volumes, and taxpayer bailouts.

“The Brisbane Council, for example, has so far paid nearly a billion dollars for the Clem7 Tunnel, which is valued at a third of that amount and attracts only a third of the projected traffic.

“The PPP model that the Government favours, called the availability payment model, means that the taxpayer makes yearly payments to the private investors whether or not there is enough toll revenue to cover those payments.

“That means the taxpayer carries all the risk and the private investors pocket all the profits. And the NZTA papers describe that as a good thing!

“Blithe assurances by the Government that they will ensure they get a good deal in the PPP contracts are not reassuring. The lesson from overseas is that the taxpayer gets fleeced every time.

“Research by Greenwich University entitled “Public Private Partnerships in the EU - a critical appraisal” concluded that all a PPP really does is let the Government borrow via a private company at high private sector rates. It costs more than public sector funding and taxpayers have to pay the private company’s profits as well.

“Governments use PPPs as a way to borrow money while keeping the debt off their books but they lock in future taxpayers to paying for a highway for decades to come, no matter how uneconomic it may be.

“It is telling that National is looking to this failed model to fund its uneconomic highway projects,” said Ms Genter.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Populism’s Changing Of The Guard, Plus A Soul Music Playlist

The weekend’s Newshub/Reid Research poll results - Act up to 11.1%, National up 1% but still sitting at only 28.7%, Labour down to 43%, the Greens up to 8.5% - shows that the combined centre right vote is still languishing nearly 12 points behind the combined centre-left vote, 45 months after the last centre-right government was voted out... More>>


Finance: Finance Minister And RBNZ Governor Agree To Update MOU On Macro-prudential Policy

Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr have updated the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on macro-prudential policy to further protect the financial system and support the Government’s housing objectives... More>>

Government: Offers Formal Apology For Dawn Raids
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has today formally apologised to Pacific communities impacted by the Dawn Raids in the 1970s.

Between 1974 and 1976, a series of rigorous immigration policies were carried out that resulted in targeted raids on the homes of Pacific families... More>>

Government: Bill Introduced To Protect Against Conversion Practices

Legislation has been introduced to Parliament to protect against practices intended to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression... More>>


Human Rights Commission: Successive Governments Responsible For Massive Breaches Of The Right To A Decent Home

Te Kahu Tika Tangata / Human Rights Commission has today launched Framework Guidelines on the Right to a Decent Home in Aotearoa and announced that it will hold a national inquiry into housing... More>>

NZUS Council: Welcomes Nomination Of Senator Tom Udall As US Ambassador To NZ

The NZUS Council welcomes the nomination of Senator Tom Udall to the role of US Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa, NZUS Council executive director Jordan Small said... More>>

BusinessNZ: Visa Extensions Welcomed
BusinessNZ has welcomed the extension of some critical skill visa durations and changes to immigration systems to speed processing. Chief Executive Kirk Hope says move acknowledges advocacy by the hospitality sector, the BusinessNZ Network and others, and comes not a moment too soon.... More>>




InfoPages News Channels