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What is the current guidance relating to Private Finance Initiatives and PF2 Projects in light of coronavirus?

On 2 April 2020, the Government issued guidance relating to Private Finance Initiatives and PF2 Projects. The guidance, which is to be enforced with immediate effect (currently due to stay in place until 30 June 2020), is one of several guidance notes issued to date.

A link to the guidance is set out below:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/877804/2020_04_01_PFI_and_COVID19_final.docx.pdf

Key messages to contracting authorities

  • PFI contractors should very much consider themselves as being part of the public sector response to the current pandemic
  • Covid-19 is not regarded as, and is not to be classified as a force majeure event
  • PFI contractors must ensure that contingency plans are up to date and have been reviewed and discussed with contracting authorities to enable the continuity of full services to respond to the pandemic and maintain vital public services
  • Contracting authorities should work closely with PFI contractors to use all available options to maintain public services during the emergency period
  • Local arrangements should be made where PFI contractors can’t deliver the agreed requirements and performance standards
  • “Best efforts” should be made by all parties for the continuation of service provision