Global law firm DLA Piper has today shared the findings of its year-long consultation into the expiry and handback process for Public Private Partnerships (PPP) in the UK. Launched in 2021, and dubbed ‘Project Autumn’, the consultation saw the firm collaborate with over 200 key PPP stakeholders including the Government, Public Sector Clients, Private Sector Investors and Groups and Industry Consultants, in the spirit of minimising the negative impact of the handback process. The report offers 10 recommendations on improving the process, reflecting the pan-industry insights therein.
Specifically focusing on the handback process in the context of social infrastructure, three key themes emerged from the consultation:
- there is a short termism at play where parties are simply focusing on surviving the process of expiry and handback;
- there is a lack of certainty on what a successful end point looks like for the industry and the key stakeholders, and;
- there is a certainty that the industry will face a slew of disputes and that adversarial process will become operating practice.
Alison Fagan, Partner at DLA Piper shares: “We are truly excited about Project Autumn. The process has been challenging, thought provoking and inspiring. It has given us a great opportunity to generate important insights and make some recommendations from the privileged position of understanding the concerns, thoughts and plans of key stakeholders from a true 360 degree perspective. We want to spark constructive, collaborative debate and assist in the formulation of dynamic solutions for the benefit of the industry at large and this report is our springboard for the same”.
You can find Project Autumn: Industry Consultation Report on PPP Handback and Expiry in full here, which includes key themes from the consultation findings, extensive soundbites from PPP stakeholders, and constructive recommendations for improving the transition during existing and future PPP projects.