Noooooooooooo!! Here's the 277th Private Eye take on PFI from a couple of weeks ago.
Labour wants to be seen giving people great looking schools <snip> but can't afford it, business can, so business fronts up the money
PFI/BSF is a crock. If one thing sinks in make sure it's the first line.
Never has there been a better time to revert to the cheaper and quicker alternative of public borrowing for public investment. Even the politically flattering off-balance-sheet treatment of PFI no longer holds any appeal. Yet so wedded to PFI has the government been for 12 years that it would be too big an admission of failure to scrap it.
So urgently needed investment will still have to go through PFI under such labyrinthe processes such as 'building schools for the future', despite causing delays the economy can ill afford. The only way to raise private money, though, will be for the government i.e. the taxpayers - to guarantee the bankers money.
The theory behind PFI was that the private sector shouldered the risk.. this was always nonsense, but it was the pretence that allowed the government to fiddle cost calculations to make PFI look cheaper. Now deals will still cost PFI rates but, through the guarantee, the taxpayer will explicitly take the risk.
Meanwhile state acquisition of banks that own PFI contracts means the taxpayer has effectively bought back shares in a number of deals..