Fleet News

Public sector fleet managers fight for their jobs

PUBLIC sector fleet managers are preparing to defend their positions against private competition as the Government prepares to broaden the scope of its Private Finance Initiative. Large Government fleets could be a prime target for PFI funding solutions from the private sector unless they can demonstrate they can deliver better value for money for the taxpayer in-house.

Prime Minister John Major is expected to place the whole PFI project on a higher profile footing with a major announcement later this summer after the scheme was dogged by delays and withdrawal of private sector financiers. A Treasury spokesman confirmed that in the PFI era nothing was sacred - including fleet - and that the Treasury would not approve any significant capital expenditure for projects for which the private finance route had not been explored.

Although it started as a traditional tender, the contract to provide transport for the Ministry of Defence is currently undergoing the PFI tender process and a decision on which funding route will be adopted is expected within the next two months. Other obvious targets would be Government department fleets currently run in-house - such as those covered in the 'Whitehall superfleet' deal with Vauxhall last year (Fleet News September 1, 1995).

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