NSW Treasury: Public Private Partnership Policy — An Evolution

Publication Date
01 January 2009

This report by the New South Wales Treasury examines the development of public–private partnerships policy in New South Wales from the time of the first public–private partnership project — the Sydney Harbour Tunnel — in the mid-1980s.

The report contends that, over the 20 years since that project, there have been dynamic changes to the way that industry and government interact.

The report discusses the New South Wales Treasury adoption of the budget rule framework, which separates investment and financing decisions, as well as industry engagement strategies and processes, which optimise outcomes and result in efficient risk allocation. It looks at the developments in the areas of economic and social infrastructure procurement by examining key projects. It also outlines changes in the financing structures and tax environment for PPPs and how public interests are managed.

The report finds that, since the time of the first public–private partnership project, public–private partnerships have been able to evolve to changing influences and adapt to the requirements of users and taxpayers. The report suggests that they may have to adapt to a changing financial landscape as a result of the Global Financial Crisis. However, the government has introduced a number of safeguards to reassure the public that PPPs will only be entered into when they are in the public interest and provide value for money.