Metronet collapse ‘confirms PPP failure’

16 July 2007

Metronet, the Public-Private-Partnership within London Underground, has collapsed financially after years of failure to provide services required by the capital’s transport system.

ASLEF general secretary Keith Norman says it would be ‘perverse’ for Gordon Brown to fail to admit that the PPP experiment has been tried and found to fail.

‘Gordon insisted that PPP was the way forward for London Underground despite the opposition of Mayor Ken Livingstone. I hope the Prime Minister will be big enough to accept that the problem is not Metronet – but that there are inherent failings in PPP as a concept,’ Keith said.

ASLEF has long argued that PPP is ‘an inherent contradiction’ – and that there is no ‘partnership’

between the public and private sectors. ‘It is possible to come to compromises at times, but the idea that a ‘partnership’ exists is a denial of the facts,’

Keith Norman says. ‘Private capital is driven by utterly different concerns than public investment. One is about making money; the other is about providing service.

‘PPP is a failure to reconcile two opposites. It is time it was ended not only in the rail industry, but in the UK economy as a whole.’

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