This story was mentioned in Holyrood today:
Neil Findlay (Lothian) (Lab): When the finance secretary met the chancellor, did he discuss public infrastructure funding? Today The Guardian newspaper and The Ferret online have exposed how the Scottish Government’s failure to interpret EU rules correctly will result in £932 million being lost to public investment. At the same time, private financiers are profiteering from the taxpayer via sky-high interest charges at a time when interest charges across the western world are at a historic low.
Is it not abundantly clear that the non-profit-distributing model is just another financial scam and that the only people who think that it is a good idea are members of the Scottish Futures Trust and people around them, who will make fortunes out of schemes? Will the cabinet secretary join me in calling for a committee of the Parliament to investigate the whole issue of NPD financing of our public services?
Derek Mackay: Members would never know from that question that the Labour Party in office totally supported the public-private partnership model—that started under the Conservatives as the private finance initiative, which was the worst regime possible. Our model is much better at profit capping and we have been able to accelerate capital infrastructure investment to build schools, hospitals and community facilities and undertake other infrastructure projects, which have been welcomed across Scotland. We have been, and will continue to be, perfectly transparent about how those projects are delivered.
I will say more about infrastructure in tomorrow’s budget statement. We will make wise decisions on our capital spending and infrastructure projects, but we continue to pay for the legacy of borrowing and profiteering that we inherited from first the Conservatives and then the Labour Party.
There was also a follow-up in The Guardian:
Coincidentally, The Fraser of Allander Institute also published a blog post on this topic today too: