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Unions declare war on publicprivate infrastructure funding


TRADE UNIONS are planning a major attack on the government's use of private finance to deliver infrastructure.

The GMB, Transport & General Workers Union, National Union of Maritime Rail & Transport Workers and Unison have all tabled anti private finance motions for a debate at next week's Trades Union Congress (TUC) annual conference.

A similarly fierce debate on the issue is expected at the Labour Party conference in October as left wing party members attempt to confront the government.

Unison's motion urges the TUC to 'expose the shortcomings and inefficiencies of the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) and Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) and to promote alternative ways of financing public investment'.

It claims that private finance fails to improve the efficiency of services and that the private sector makes excessive profits.

This is expected to be countered at the conferences by a new organisation called the PPP Forum, set up by private sector companies keen to promote the benefits of the PFI. Its members include Amec, Laing, law firm Clifford Chance and investment company Innisfree.

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