Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/570/7036

From The Socialist newspaper, 11 March 2009

Scrap PFI Now!

The Socialist Party

The Socialist Party's 'Grim Reaper' joins the Keep Our NHS Public 'Defend our health service' protest outside the Department of Health on the 60th anniversary of the founding of the health service, photo Paul Mattsson

In yet another humiliating blow to its pro-big business economic policy the New Labour government is providing state 'loans' of up to 2 billion to prop up the Private Finance Initiative (PFI).

Adrian O'Malley, Unison health service group executive Yorkshire and Humberside (personal capacity)

The 2 billion announced by treasury minister Yvette Cooper is an admission that the private sector is incapable of delivering much needed new infrastructure projects. It puts the government in the ludicrous position of being a lender of the money that it is borrowing!

Having opposed PFI while in opposition, New Labour enthusiastically implemented PFI throughout the public sector once elected. PFI was invented by the last Tory government to keep public infrastructure projects off the public spending figures and allegedly transfer the risks from the government to the private sector.

Under PFI, hospitals, schools, roads etc have been built by private consortia. These are often made up of banks who financed the schemes, and building firms who built, maintained and managed the projects. The projects are then leased back to the government at hugely inflated rates for anything up to 35 years.

The 'PFI industry' became extremely profitable for the capitalists involved as their income was guaranteed and their so-called risks were low. The costs to the NHS are expected to increase from 470 million in yearly repayments in 2007 to 2.3 billion a year by 2014! These so-called investors get a six-fold return on the cash they put up.

Even this is not enough for the banks, who have now stopped the flow of new money. Hence an 8 billion-gap in funding for new projects in waste, education and transport.

The PFI scheme at my Trust, Mid Yorkshire Hospitals, is a 300 million deal with Consort Healthcare which is funded by the Royal Bank of Scotland. The RBS has been virtually nationalised during the credit crunch, yet we are still facing hundreds of job losses in the coming months as the Trust attempts to meet the exorbitant repayment charges.

Dave Prentis, general secretary of the public sector workers' union Unison, has said the loans are "throwing good money after bad" and it is "time to make a clean break with PFI". This is correct, but Unison should not just be calling for no new PFI deals to be signed, but for the nationalisation under democratic control of every existing PFI. The union leadership should be outlining a strategy to fight for this.

My Unison branch has publicly called for the nationalisation of the Private Finance Initiative and the return of all privatised staff employed within it to the public sector. This demand is popular with our members. The local media picked it up and asked why the government is borrowing money from itself at higher rates than it would pay if it funded the hospital itself.

We have sent motions to Unison's health and national delegate conferences calling for a national campaign for nationalisation and for Unison to use its resources to campaign against PFI.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 11 March 2009:

Fight against unemployment

Youth Fight for Jobs


War and terrorism

Northern Ireland: Sectarian violence returns

Guadeloupe: Workers' general strike victory


Socialist Party campaigns

Scrap PFI Now!

No college cuts in Wales

Tyne and Wear Metro

Council pay fiasco


Socialist Party feature

Miners' strike 1984-85


Socialist Party workplace news

Dundee workers occupy to fight for rights

Thousands of workers affected by construction industry blacklist

Construction workers' dispute: National action needed

Airwave jobs strike

Amicus: Good left vote

South Eastern Trains


 

Home   |   The Socialist 11 March 2009   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

PFI:

triangleCapitalism fails NHS services in Liverpool: scrap PFI!

triangleNorthern Ireland: strike action by NHS workers

triangle300 NHS nurse suicides in seven years - fully fund our health service now!

triangleNon-fiction: 'Unhealthy Profits: PFI in the NHS'

triangleWorcestershire: save the libraries, reverse all the cuts

Unison:

triangleMake a stand: set legal no-cuts council budgets

triangleReverse Unison's undemocratic nomination of Blairite Starmer

triangleUnison national executive members challenge validity of nomination for Keir Starmer for leader of the Labour Party

triangleCouncil concedes to striking winter gritters' demands

Public sector:

trianglePCS elections: Support socialist candidates

triangleProbation privatisation failure

trianglePCS: Vote Yes to strike for better pay

Nationalisation:

triangleNo free ride for the airline bosses - nationalise Flybe now!

triangleThe private sector will never provide broadband to every home, nationalisation will

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

22/1/20

East London

A win against academisation in east London

22/1/20

Council

Make a stand: set legal no-cuts council budgets

22/1/20

Tamil Solidarity

Building Tamil Solidarity with youth and the unions

22/1/20

Royal Mail

Royal Mail workers to reballot for strike action

22/1/20

South Yorkshire

"If you think bus and rail services are crap, sign our petition to take them back"

22/1/20

The Socialist

Westex strikers read the Socialist

22/1/20

Belfast

Belfast Hovis workers' all-out strike

22/1/20

PCS

Renewing the left in PCS

22/1/20

Liverpool

Capitalism fails NHS services in Liverpool: scrap PFI!

15/1/20

Young people

Young people who voted for Corbyn's manifesto will now ask... How can we win those ideas?

15/1/20

Scotland

Massive Scottish independence demo marks new stage in struggle

15/1/20

London

London: Protesters return to oppose Middle East war

15/1/20

Government

Cladding scandal: Government steps up defence of landlords

15/1/20

Nottingham

Nottingham: Youth protest against Barclays 64 million fossil-fuel investments

15/1/20

Strike

Westex Carpet strike reaches two month mark

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


January 2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999