Last Updated:
26 Jun 2022

Performance of PFI Construction

Author: National Audit Office

One of the core areas of debate around the use of the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) concerns the performance of PFI construction projects, and in particular whether they deliver to the expected time, price and quality.The National Audit Office has, ever since the inception of the PFI, been at the forefront of objective, independent analysis of the circumstances in which PFI projects offer value for money to taxpayers. In addition to reports focused on individual contracts, and those focused on the performance of private finance in specific sectors, we have, from time to time, reported on issues of cross-cutting interest. One of our cross-cutting reports in 2003 examined the evidence surrounding the delivery of Private Finance construction programmes to the time and price expected by the public sector in the contract. This report attracted debate and has subsequently been extensively quoted in a range of official, academic and media publications.This paper updates the 2003 work. It considers new survey evidence on the performance of PFI contracts in 2008 and also weighs up evidence on the performance of non-PFI contracts.