Will they sell off HS2?

17 July 2017

On the day the government announced £6.6 billion of contracts for the first phase of HS2 – and confirmed that the HS1 Channel Tunnel rail link, bought by Canadian pension funds Borealis and Ontario Teachers for £2.1 billion in 2010, has been sold to a consortium of investors for £3 billion – Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, has condemned the way that private companies make enormous profits at public expense and called on the government to promise that HS2 won’t, in turn, be sold off, too.


Mick said: ‘In the light of franchises now being sold, like commodities, to groups that did not bid for them, and direct award becoming the new norm, we call upon the government to confirm that HS2 – which is being paid for by the taxpayer – will always remain in the public sector and not be asset stripped by any government for the benefit of privateers.’


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