McDonnell: PFI nationalisation ‘will save money’

Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell has insisted that his plans to bring PFI contracts back in-house would not cost the country anything.

Speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, McDonnell argued that “up to 30%” is paid out to the private partners in PFI projects, presumably referring to 30% of the total public liability for the contracts.

When asked how much the plans would cost, McDonnell responded: “I don’t think it will cost us anything in the long-run.”

He added: “We believe we can negotiate and we will start a process of negotiation to bring those back. We think we will save money as a result.”

However, he did not explain how such a process would end up in saving taxpayers money.

During the interview, McDonnell also insisted that he did not expect to see a run on the pound under a Labour government, arguing that his comments at the Labour party conference that he was ‘war-gaming’ for such a scenario was simply in response to a question on a hypothetical situation.

The shadow Chancellor also clarified that he does not plan to nationalise the entire construction industry, as some had reported, but instead is looking at nationalising the energy construction industry, believing that this could deliver better results for the taxpayer.