Sunday, 28 August 2016

More than 200 PFI schools are now partially owned by offshore investment funds

"More than 200 schools built in Scotland under private finance initiative (PFI) schemes are now at least partially owned by offshore investment funds."

"Under PFI, the private sector builds and manages school buildings in return for a fee, typically over 25-30 years."

"In one project in Edinburgh, 17 new schools were built, with the council paying £1.5m a month."

"Analysis for the BBC found there had been 13 trades involving equity in the Edinburgh schools scheme since 2001."

 "Although published data does not confirm the exact number of PFI schools owned wholly or partly offshore, it is clear they represent the vast majority."

"Stakes in PFI building projects can be sold. They can then be traded on the secondary market to become parts of larger investment funds and pensions, as the monthly fees paid by councils provide a steady income."

"Dexter Whitfield, from the European Services Strategy Unit, told a BBC Scotland investigation the Edinburgh PPP1 scheme was now owned by four different companies."

"`Those four different companies are located offshore in Guernsey and Jersey, and they are basically controlled by shareholders,` he said."

"A critic of PFI, he has described the projects as `wealth machines`, adding: `There are an awful lot of people making very substantial sums of money out of it`."

"The 17 schools built in Edinburgh under PPP1 were closed for repairs earlier this year after construction faults were found."

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