Sinn Féin TD and the Chair of the Public Accounts Committee Brian Stanley has expressed concern at the cost to the taxpayer of Public Private Partnerships.
Deputy Stanley was speaking following a response to his parliamentary question, which outlined that €256.9m was spent on PPPs in 2019.
The PPP model has been criticised by numerous bodies, including the European Court of Auditors, for not delivering value for taxpayers’ money and being inefficient at delivering projects on time and within budget.
Speaking today, Deputy Stanley said: “It is alarming to see that almost €260m was spent on PPPs last year. This is a model which has been shown to waste taxpayers’ money.
“Whether it is in the Education, Health or Transport, the PPP model has been proven to be inefficient with public money and to lack proper transparency.
“The answer to the PQ which I have received outlines that a total of €98.3m was spent on transport infrastructure, €75m on education and €35m on courts in the Justice sector.
“These are substantial sums of money which are being funnelled into private companies and the taxpayer is seeing very little value for money.
“What is equally frustrating is a reluctance upon successive governments to move away from the PPP model.
“The National Children’s Hospital, at €2b, is already set to be the most expensive hospital in the world, and the final cost to the state has yet to be confirmed.
“The National Broadband Plan has already cost €13.5m of taxpayers’ money in 2020 with a further €3b committed over 25 years – a particularly dreadful PPP which doesn’t even return the infrastructure to state-ownership after the contract.
“As Chair of PAC, I will work to ensure that we hold these PPPs to account, and that we see the greatest level of oversight and transparency possible.”