BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: In Depth:
Front Page 
World 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 

Wednesday, 19 July, 2000, 12:29 GMT 13:29 UK
MPs warn on Tube sell-off
London Underground
MPs have asked the government to clarify their sell-off plans
Plans to part-privatise London Underground must not lead to passengers "being subjected to intolerable overcrowding and delays," a cross-party group of MPs has told the government.

The government's "public-private partnership" (PPP) plans for the Tube are dependent on more revenue from extra passengers, but the Commons transport select committee pointed out that it already runs at full capacity during peak hours.

The committee's report said that if the PPP is to go ahead ministers must clarify their proposals.

London Mayor Ken Livingstone
MPs say Ken Livingstone's bond scheme plan should not be ruled out
"The government should re-examine the projection of future passenger use of the Underground on which the PPP is based, to ensure that the projections are realistic and would not involve the passengers being subjected to intolerable overcrowding and delays," the report said.

The committee also asked the government to give evidence of the efficiency savings that would be made under PPP.

Bonds scheme

In a section which will please London Mayor Ken Livingstone, the committee asked the government to "demonstrate clearly why the benefits of the PPP could not be secured by London Underground within the public sector, in conjunction with a bond financing scheme".

Mr Livingstone fought his campaign for the London mayoralty with a policy to issue bonds to finance the Tube, backed by a combination of fares and a government grant.

Although he threatened to go all the way to court if needs be to halt the Tube sell-off, he has backed away from that pledge since taking office.

He set up an inquiry into the options for future financing of the Underground, chaired by head of the Industrial Society Will Hutton.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
See also:

03 Jul 00 | UK Politics
Transport is biggest issue - Livingstone
03 Jul 00 | UK Politics
Livingstone needs cash
30 Jun 00 | UK Politics
Mayor challenges transport bosses
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites