Research on Long and Short Term Involvement in a Public-Private Partnership Contract
Number of words: 6745
Public-private partnerships (PPPs) are contractual means that are aimed at delivering assets and services to the public. Arrangements, where a private contractor supplies the public with infrastructure assets and services meant to be provided by the government, represent a simple form of a PPP contract. In most cases, PPP contracts emphasize on service provision to the public and importantly, increase investment by the private sector. Equally, a government can agree jointly with one or more private partners to provide services to people under specified conditions. Notably, PPP contracts serve as a way ofensuring that infrastructure within a specific region or nation has improved (Ismail and AzzahraHaris, 2014). Infrastructure is n important catalyst that speeds up economic growth and development within economies. As such, it is essential to examine how the government uses PPP contracts to ensure the provision of infrastructure services and assets to the general public. For a PPP contract to work, the interests of the private sector must align with the goal of the government, which is to provide infrastructural facilities. The government of a particular nation can decide to transfer exclusive rights to a private operator to develop and maintain specific facilities (Yang, Hou and Wang, 2013). In such a situation, the agreement made between the private investor and the government represents a PPP contract (Tserng, Russell, Hsu and Lin, 2011). Each individual in the covenant must adhere to terms and conditions for the period of the contract. The paper examines merits associated with both long-term and short-term involvement in a PPP contract. Equally, it is the interest of the paper to critically discuss financial risks that are considered when one is choosing to partner. Also, the research will focus on the financial opportunities or benefits that accrue to a contactor in a PPP agreement. In a bid to meet the objectives of the research, the report will conclude by stating assumptions and their possible effect on the research established.
Merits of Short-term Involvement in a PPP Contract
PPP contracts have benefits that accrue to both parties in the agreement. The first short-term merit of such contracts is that they facilitate timely provision of public services to citizens. Sometimes the government can delay providing for its people due to bureaucracy issues that are associated. As such, the use of PPP contracts can help deliver such crucial infrastructure services and assets to people (Zhang, Gao, Feng and Sun, 2015). Theneed to improve infrastructure within economies makes it necessary to use PPP contracts in a bid to promote development. In the short-term, people within a specific area have the opportunity to receive services from the facility in question. PPP agreements guarantee the society of quality projects, which are usually done promptly. In essence, the contracts are beneficial to the society that need to benefit from the on-set of such agreements. Infrastructural assets and services are vital to any society, which makes it necessary to contractprivate operators in cases where the government might fail to meet the needs of people. PPP contracts ensure the provision of quality services to citizens within the stipulated time frame in the short-run.
PPP contracts are crucial in the short-run as they help the government promote monetization. Monetization policies within an economy aim to control the circular flow of money in a bid to avoid economic lapses. For instance, if the economy has a lot of cash flowing, there are expected cases of inflation, which harms development. In such a case, the government can decide to lease out its assets to private developers in exchange for a lump sum upfront. The government, in turn, holds the money for a while, reducing money in flow within the economy. Excessive cash within the economy can prompt the government to promote monetization as a pillar of economic growth. When there is less cash flowing within the economy, the government acts by use of monetization policies to help bring the flow of money toequilibrium. Agreements that the government makes with private operators to provide services in exchange for a lump sum aim at promoting monetization (Henckel and McKibbin, 2010). Typically, the government would use the lump sum issued by private operators to develop other infrastructural sectors of the economy. Such PPP contract terms help the government reinvest and develop the already existing infrastructure facilities.
The third short-term benefit that is associated with PPP contracts is the idea of job creation for locals within the area of construction. Private developers who take over from the government hire people within the economy that helps them improve their standards of living. Creation of jobs is a collective responsibility of the public and private sectors within any economy. As such, contracting provision of infrastructural assets and services to people within a locality creates employment for people (Meunier and Quinet, 2010). Projects that run for a short while help employees accomplish tasks, which could have been harder to achieve with the government. People are employed by the private operator to construct, design, and monitor the process of service provision within a specific locality. In return, the individuals are paid wages and salaries that help improve their standards of living. In the process, the earned money is spent within the economy, which promotes GDP increase. PPP contracts play a crucial role in creating employment for locals as financed by private investors. For instance, road construction requires workforce to handle the machines and contribute physically. In essence, employment creation can be stimulated by contractual agreements between the public and private sectors of an economy.
Short-term involvement in a PPP contract enables the government to achieve greater service coverage for users. The government might not be idealistically perfect in distributing resources to all regions in an equal measure. As a strategy to improve short term service coverage, a government can enter into contractual terms with aprivate operator to provide the services in areas where the government is unable to cover. In essence, a PPP can help achieve higher service coverage within the economy as compared to the government providing everything. Some res within a country re disadvantaged for various reasons, making it necessary to use private investors in a bid to improve and provide infrastructural facilities within the region. As such, PPP contract terms are beneficial in the short-run as they allow agovernment to increase its service coverage to hardship areas (Ismail, 2014). Equally, infrastructure is crucial in the process of distribution of resources, making it a necessity to enter into a PPP contract with a view of promoting service coverage. As such, short term involvement in PPP agreements can guarantee proper service coverage among users within a particular nation.
Merits of Long-term Involvement in a PPP Contract
Long-term involvement in PPP contracts has its benefits within an economy and to the government. The first long-term advantage that is associated with PPP contraction is that it helps increase private investments. The government enters negotiations to contract provision of specific infrastructural assets and services for people within a particular area. For any economy to make progress, both the private and public sectors must be developedenough to take on opportunities that may arise. The private sector is one of the most significant contributors to a country’s GDP. As such, there is a need to empower the private sector in a bid to promote investments and economic growth (Cruz and Marques, 2012). Failure of the government to promote and empower the private sector might lead to the provision of poor services. In the long-run, such investments help the economy as they encourage the private sector to invest in opportunities that emerge. The government might not be in a position to deliver all infrastructural service requirements at once. This makes it necessary to involve private developers with a view of ensuring the timely provision of services (EffahAmeyaw and Chan, 2013). Private sector investment creates employment opportunities and promotes GDP growth toa large extent. Long-term involvement in PPP contracts ensures that the private sector is empowered to provide important basics, which are a backbone for economic growth and development.
Involvement of PPP contracts on a long-term basis reduces the risks associated with the direct provision of the services by the government. For instance, government officials might embezzle funds that are meant for a particular project, making it necessary to a higher a private operator who will make proper use of resources allocated. Resources that fund infrastructure development are limited for most countries, especially those in third world economies. The use of PPP contract terms can help the government reduce perils associated. For instance, a government can offer a contract to a private investor to supply specifics to schools and hospitals. Risks such as corruption can hamper any efforts to make a project succeed within the budget set. In such a situation, a private developer will assure the government of quality provision of services and assets within the time set (Macário, 2010). Management in private sector firms is stringent on matters of accountability as a crucial virtue in the execution of PPP contracts. Upon agreement, risks that are associated with construction or developing infrastructure are transferred to the private operator. This saves the government the burden of paying and monitoring the project, which could otherwise lead to loss of lots of money.
PPP contracts enhance competition within an economy in the long-run. Prior to entering such contracts, the government openly advertises the opportunity to the public for a transparent procurement process. Such processes attract most suited and qualified investors to the negotiation table, a move that ensures value for the money that is allocated for the projects. In the event of competition among bidders, every firm does its best to ensure that contractual terms are honored to the highest standard. For the government, the inherent competition among bidders allows choosing a contractor who best meets the needs and expectations. The long-term result of increased bidder competition is the provision of quality services on time. Firms that do not honor or that have failed to honor contract terms before are easily blacklisted from participating. Such initiatives can ensure that an economy gets the best from contracted operators on behalf of the government (Wibowo and Alfen, 2015). In essence, PPP contract terms allow the government to promote private investment, reduce risks associated with the nation carrying out the project and enhance competition in the long-run within an economy.
PPP agreements provide an economical way of providing essential services to people in a country. The projects ensure that the private sector has invested and at the same time, people are served with what they need on time (Macário, 2010). Transfer of risks from the government to the private operator saves the government costs of operation and developing infrastructure facilities. In most PPP agreements, the government must release funding for the projects to start as intended. The total cost of construction should be paid in advance for successful launching and implementation. The fact that costs are agreed and paid prior to commencement of the project is an advantage to governments. In case of changes that might affect budgetary allocations, it is the responsibility of the private operator to devise mechanisms on how to handle the matter. Notably, the government benefits by evading unnecessary costs that may arise in due course of the project.
Major Financial Risks in PPP Agreements
Prior to involvement in a PPP contract, both parties should assess the major financial risks that are associated with such contracts. Secondary contractors should evaluate critically the monetary issues that can arise upon signing the contract. The essence of conducting such an assessment is to avoid shocks that could otherwise contribute to poor service provision. Funds involved in the construction of airports, rail transport and roads are huge, requiring one to conduct a thorough evaluation before investing. Major financial risks associated include a possible hike in the costs associated, misuse of funds meant for the project and inadequate resources to fully execute the projects. Equally, debt costs associated with borrowing po9se a major financial risk (Mendel. and Brudney, 2012). It is important to note that in most cases, there is no unlimited risk bearing in PPP agreement.
In a PPP agreement, the government grants concession to the private operator to proceed with the project. A possible financial risk with transferring the project to a private investor is the hiking of the cost of the project. For instance, most private investors get into such business agreements to make profits. The idea of making profits prompts the operator to increase the cost of the project. The construction of facilities such as stadia, roads and airports is capital intensive, risking the possibility of higher costs in the case of private operators. The government can opt to execute the project but offers to contract a second party to oversee completion. In the event, the price of each item is increased, questioning the essence of contracting a private operator. Short term PPP projects are likely to cost the government more funds than running the project by itself. The extra costs on the exact budget can be used to improve the project in cases where the government opts to undertake the project (Auzzir, Haigh and Amaratunga, 2014).Escalating of prices during PPP contracts poses a risk of incompletion of the projects. Many projects have stalled due to price hiking, which reduces the amount of resources available for such projects.
The other potential financial risk associated with PPP contracts is the misuse of funds meant to complete infrastructural framework within specific areas. Some politicians use their power, especially in third world economies, to award contracts to unscrupulous investors who end up misusing funds. In such a case, the operator is protected by corrupt government individuals, which risks the delivery of essential services to people. For instance, if a project is allocated 2 billion USD, some investors will end up using like 60% constructively and misuse the rest. In such a case, the money allocated does not give value as intended by the government. Misuse of funds meant for public provision of goods and services compromises the wellbeing of people within the society. In essence, the government should ensure that funds allocated to private operators to deliver services are used in the right manner (Liu and Wilkinson, 2011).PPP agreements are characterized by massive misuse of funds, which risks proper execution of the projects allocated. In caseswhere the government undertakes the project, there is a likelihood that the funds might be utilized well. Funds that could otherwise be misused can be applied to develop other infrastructural sectors within the economy. Public-private partnerships expose funds to more misuse risks than when the government undertakes the project.
Inadequate funds to oversee the completion of various infrastructural assets and services pose a possible financial risk associated with PPP projects. Most developing nations in the world face a problem of funding, especially for infrastructure and other capital intensive investments. The only way the government can ensure that services are availed is to seek funding from private investors. Sometimes private investors do not have enough funds to oversee completion of particular projects, risking the quality of work done. A private operator can take a contract from the government, which might fail in releasing all the funds meant for the project. Government delays or failure to release funds hurts PPP contracts to a large extent. Such financial risks must be taken into account by a secondary contactor before venturing into a project. Funds are the most important in the execution of any contract between a private operator and the government. The funds allocated for such projects are not enough to build and provide standard facilities, especially within the third world economies (Ke, Wang, Chan and Cheung, 2011). Inadequate fund provision by the government risks efficiency and efficacy of the whole project. It is important to evaluate the whole PPP project before venturing in as it can be facing impending financial risks.
Third world economies suffer from the problem of poverty, which has derailed infrastructural development within such nations. There is a need for governments in such countries to devise strategic measures that can oversee the construction of modern infrastructure assets and services to people within their states. Inadequate funding in such countries prompts their government to enter into partnerships that aim to provide basic services and assets to citizens. The loans that are meant to increase infrastructural assets in third world economies accumulate, which has placed such countries into a situation of indebtedness. There are many cases of countries in Africa failing to pay their debts as required. Equally, such projects can push private operators into borrowing for investment in a PPP contract. Some projects end up failing, risking the position of involved operators within the industry. Indebtedness has made countries unable to finance projects that are helpful to citizens within the country. Loans borrowed from the private sector are subjected to high-interest rates, which has left countries in debt working hard to pay off the rates (Verhoest, et. al., 2015). Such rates paid can be used to develop other sectors in the economy, especially on infrastructural assets and services. Indebtedness is a possible financial risk associated with short-term and long-term involvement in PPP agreements.
In most PPP arrangements, there is no unlimited financial risk-bearing as one might think. For instance, there are risks such as foreign exchange and those associated with the exchange of assets. Such risks are beyond the control of investors and could pose a serious threat to the successful completion of a PPP project. Secondary c9ontractors will be more cautious of such risks before agreeing with the government. If they have to bear the risks fully, the same will have an implication on the budget and total cost for the project. The fact there is no unlimited risk-bearing makes it expensive for private contractors to participate. As such, PPP agreements are not desirable to contractors due to the risks that are associated with the venture. PPP contracts are associated with financial risks that should be considered keenly before one agreeing to undertake the project. Failure to assess the possible risks associated and whether they are limited or not risks the position of the government in procuring infrastructural assets and services (Galilea and Medda, 2010). The private sector has rules of the game, which the government ought to respect for operators to take on the contract. In essence, both parties within a PPP agreement are faced with a possible challenge of lack of unlimited risk-bearing.
Potential Financial Benefits/Opportunities
Undertaking a PPP project has potential benefits that accrue to both parties involved. For instance, the private sector gets an opportunity to invest more funds as a way of empowering economic growth and development. Empowering the private sector has positive results, especially with the provision of important infrastructural assets and services.The government needs to give a chance to small and medium-sized enterprises to take part in the economic development of a country. Awarding such contracts to such firms promotes growth within the private sector. The private sector is important for any government as it contributes to GDP growth. The private sector technology and innovation play a crucial role in providing services to people within any economy. It is important that all operators within the market ct in good faith of the other for better results. In the event, the government acts to promote private investment initiatives at the same time, ensuring that people have received basic services as it relates to infrastructure (Sharma, 2012). The public sector alone cannot provide all the services required for people in every areapromptly. This prompts the government to contract other private operators to realize its objectives. In the event, the private sector benefits by getting funds for further investments. PPP agreements benefit the private sector by availing more funds for further investments.
PPP contracts guarantee citizens and the government effectiveness, efficiency and quality delivery of projects promptly. For instance, when a private contractor takes over from the government, there is a likelihood that the execution will be based on merit. Executing a project properly requires the efficient use of resources allocated and proper time management. The project should be completed within the period anticipated as any further lengthening might attract financial implications. Some contractors within an economy are well known for doing a shoddy job that deserves no pay. Such individuals are avoided during the bidding process as it is very competitive. Eventually, the government chooses the best-suited contractor to undertake the project, a process that ensures efficiency and timeliness. The logic behind completion of projects on time is to ensure that citizens reap benefits as intended by the government. Misuse of funds within stretches a budget, which risks the completion of a particular project. Every step taken by the private operator must be evaluated for efficiency and efficacy (Jensen and Wu, 2017). Most government-run projects do not have the two as pre-requisites to successful project completion. As such, PPP projects assure the government of efficiency and effective use of resources allocated, which is a significant financial benefit.
Another crucial financial benefit or opportunity associated with PPP agreements is the transfer of risk from the government to a private developer. There are many financial risks associated with the undertaking of infrastructural development and construction projects by the government (Franco and Estevão, 2010). Equally, the government has a lot in its plate to handle and ensuring successful completion of such projects is questionable. This is because projects require monitoring for both parties to realize a financial opportunity or benefit from the same. For instance, the risk of managing the funds for the project is transferred to the private operator. In such situations, the government avoids misuse of public funds meant for infrastructure. Transfer of risk is an essential aspect of any contract agreement, and the government evades any possible financial lapses as the private operator will be held responsible (Franco and Estevão, 2010). Employees who work to see projects are completed successfully benefit by earning salaries and wages, which boost their standards of living. In the event, the GDP of the economy grows, and jobs are created. Risk transfer is an aspect that the government enjoys courtesy of PPP agreements with one or more private operators. In essence, the creation of jobs, improved standards of living and transfer of risks of the project are some of the potential financial benefits that accrue to one in a PPP contract.
PPP contracts that have been undertaken before are useful to both parties in one way or the other. For instance, future projects that seem similar can borrow much from the previous contractual experience in a bid to avoid mistakes made before. In essence, the contracts act as a reference point for secondary contractors and other financiers to assess possible risks associated with the business (Franco and Estevão, 2010). Budgetary experts for future projects can have it easy preparing one as they will need to factor in inflation as a significant impact on the cost of the project. In the event, accountability and transparency are fostered within the private sector as a way of earning trust. Mistakes that were conducted previously can be corrected to avoid any further financial implications. Efficient budget allocation can be enhanced by borrowing loosely from the previous budgets prepared for similar PPP agreements. The experience from previous projects can enlighten one on how to utilize funds for a project (Franco and Estevão, 2010). As such, PPP agreements done before act as a learning example for several other projects that can be done in the future.
After a rigorous process of research, there are a number of assumptions that can be made regarding PPP contracts and their role in promoting economic development. PPP infrastructural asset programs are reliant on private funding, which can risk the execution of such projects.For instance, PPP schools have been reported to be less comfortable for some reasons. The value for money in such facilities makes it difficult to deliver quality services to people within a particular region (Boardman and Vining, 2012). Conventional procurement strategies used in public hospitals have challenged operational costs. Some PPPs make the construction of hospitals expensive than they should be. The biggest concern with such infrastructure facilities is their impact on the planning of health care facilities and services. Planning should not be based on the procurement process as it is with conventional approaches. Road construction is the best fit for PPP projects that a government wants to undertake (Boardman and Vining, 2012). The biggest concern with road construction is unforeseen ground challenges. In Europe and beyond, highway construction will be at the forefront of PPP projects. Other concerns that associated with highway construction include interference with utilities, demand risks, approvals and lack of independence in bodies responsible. In essence, some projects are easily feasible, while others are complex to handle.
Government bonds play an important role in the execution and issuance of PPP contracts to the private sector. A bond is an instrument that represents a financial value, issued by private people or the government (Zou, Kumaraswamy, Chung and Wong, 2014). Bonds usually offer fixed interest payments for periods longer than one year. Government bonds serve various purposes within an economy. For instance, the government can use bonds to regulate the flow of money within an economy. In situations where there is a lot of money in flow, the government issues bonds to private developers in return for huge sums (Shrestha, Chan, Aibinu and Chen, 2017). In the event, the flow of money is brought to an equilibrium point. Sale of government securities to the private is a vital monetization policy that central banks of nations use. When the government cannot provide services in some areas, it contracts a private sector individual or company to do the same on its behalf. The concession granted to the private operator in return for money is a bond. There is a need to make use of government bonds and promote all sectors of the economy as it pertains to infrastructure. Such bonds guarantee the government of diversification of funding and cost-effectiveness in the carrying out various projects. The biggest concern associated with government bonds is that there is no direct relationship with bondholders, which risks the involvement of one in such projects.
Debt funding has paralyzed development in some countries, especially those that are still developing. Third world economies find themselves in situations that compel their governments to borrow money for infrastructural development (Carbonara and Pellegrino, 2014). However, due to poor management and increased corruption, such resources end up being misused. Repaying the loans at the expected time becomes difficult, plunging the economy into a situation of indebtedness. Resources that have been borrowed for infrastructure development should be used constructively for them to make a return on the investment. Indebtedness is a situation where a country cannot be able to pay debts owing to a different country or entity. PPP projects should serve as a way for the government to deliver basic services while meeting the expectations of the private sector. Accountability is an important issue that PPP contracts should be based on. This is because trustworthy private operators are likely to get the nod in case the government wants to contract any. Debt funding has made it impossible for some countries to get further funds, even when it is pressing (Carbonara and Pellegrino, 2014). Such cases should be avoided by ensuring that money borrowed is put into constructive use for it to deliver services to the public. Failure of operators in the market to consider the issue of debt funding can lead a nation into serious problems, especially for future generations.
Risk transfer is another important aspect noted in the issuance of PPP contracts to private developers. There is aneed to understand how much of a risk is transferred from the government to private operators. Signing a contract before understanding risks that are involved in the execution of the project might prove problematic for both parties. Many potential financial risks pose a threat to the implementation of a project successfully. For instance, a change in exchange rates is beyond the control of the private investor. Such risks make private operators contemplate before agreeing to contracts issued by the government (Carbonara and Pellegrino, 2014). For the government, it is easier to make a contractual agreement as it would want to transfer risks and associated costs of running projects. Private investors take charge and control resources that are allocated for the project, and this helps the government reduce risks associated.
Given the period required to complete most PPP projects, assessing all contingencies associated in due process or during implementation proves difficult. In most cases, involved parties need to renegotiate and establish a way of accommodating the contingencies. Equally, some projects are terminated prior to their commencement for such reasons (Wibowo and Alfen, 2015). Unforeseen emergencies should be handled in the right manner for they can paralyze the whole project. Reasons that can lead to termination of a PPP contract include a change in government policy. If the government policy within a specific area decides to invest in a different sector, then the funds will be redirected, which brings the project to a halt (Henckel and McKibbin, 2010). Change of government policy can be facilitated by a shift in focus in the same sector as intended or inadequate financial resources. Another imminent challenge is the failure of either party to honor contractual obligations. In such a case, the aggrieved party can opt to seek legal help, which might lead to the termination of the specific contract. Natural aspects within a country can affect the construction of infrastructure facilities within an economy. Such issues are not addressed in a PPP agreement and are likely to pop up most of the time.
Governments have a responsibility of ensuring that individuals within a society receive services as it pertains to infrastructure. As such, the government should task all individuals and companies allocated tenders to deliver in good faith. Some private operators can deliver quality projects only that they need to be closely monitored (Macário, 2010). The role of the government is to provide a favorable environment for the provision of services and at the same time, promote private sector investments. As a way of promoting equality, the government allocates projects to the private sector. Assessments that are done to determine the right clients to participate in the projects shed light on unscrupulous investors who aim to embezzle funds. It is through such projects that the authorities can fight out illegal and malicious business people within an economy (Henckel and McKibbin, 2010). As an attempt to handle the matter, the governments of various countries should establish agencies that examine PPP arrangements and the investors involved.
Effect of Assumptions on the Answer
Assumptions made from the research help make many understand the role of PPP projects in spearheading infrastructural development in various economies. For instance, insight on government bonds is useful in understanding the phenomenon behind government borrowing and private developers. Equally, from the assumptions made, one can easily presume that the only way to achieve high-level infrastructure development, PPP models must be used. PPP facilities such s hospital might not deliver the best of results as they operate on the value for money (Acerete, Stafford and Stapleton, 2012). The knowledge of transport construction and concerns associated makes one understand why some infrastructural projects have stalled or never kicked. It is vital to have an in-depth analysis of the issue of debt funding and how it has affected development within third world economies. The knowledge gained is useful and applicable in tackling the assignment.
Assumptions made enlighten the society on the issues that revolve around PPP contracts and financial benefits that accrue to both parties. In the event, one gains a deeper understanding of how nations manage to gather funding for various projects. Having such information helps secondary contractors assess the risks associated versus the benefits before making an informed decision on the same (Grubisic et al., 2014).Equally, a detailed examination of the assumptions made makes one understand why some facilities have failed in their mandate to serve the public. Funding is an important aspect that the government should consider before issuing contracts. If funds are well utilized, then it is to achieve economic growth and development. Private developers do not bear an unlimited financial liability to such projects, which makes such operators contemplate on participating in the projects or not. The knowledge has been useful in arriving at detailed conclusions on PPP contract and their role in enhancing economic development.
To sum it up, PPP contracts represent agreements where the government agrees to contract a private operator to provide the public with infrastructural assets and services, PPP agreements are at the forefront of promoting development especially within European countries. In third world economies, poverty and mismanagement of funds have resulted in indebtedness. Borrowed funds for PPP projects should be utilized well for it to ensure value for money allocated. Road infrastructure is the most common type of infrastructure that PPP projects concentrate on. Equally, government bonds play a crucial role in the issuance of such contracts. The bonds can also help regulate the flow of money within an economy. Rail construction is the most complicated form of a PPP project for most countries and private developers. Transfer of risks from the government to a private operator is a significant reason why the government engages in PPP contracts. Individuals and companies taking contracts should assess all potential risks associated before signing an agreement to the same.
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