Byline: Mohd Anwar Yahya

The Ninth Malaysia Plan stated that private finance initiative (PFI) will be introduced as a new measure under the privatisation programme to enhance efficiency in the public sector infrastructure and delivery ser­vice. This article addresses some of the common queries and concerns.

Global and regional trends

Many countries which have adopted the PFI/PPP framework are at different stages of development. The UK leads in terms of market maturity, closely followed by the Australian market. Regionally, South Korea and Japan are slightly more advanced in terms of number and size of deals closed. Singapore started its PPP programme in 2004 and has launched a number of deals.

Some of the key benefits of PFI are:

  1. Delivering better value for money.
  2. Single point of accountability.
  3. Better certainty in quality.
  4. Better certainty in timing.

The key features of PFI as discussed above will align the behaviour of the private sector to the requirements of the public sector and thereby address some of the problems associated with recent cases of shoddy workmanship and maintenance in government buildings.

The question then is: Should all government projects be procured under PFI?

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This article first appeared in The Edge, 13 Aug 2007