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Public, Private and Profitable

Duration:
38 minutes
First broadcast:
Tuesday 23 October 2012

The midnight collapse of the Government's plans for the West Coast main railway line once again raises questions about the outsourcing of public services to private providers.
Public bodies of all kinds now face massive budget cuts and are under pressure to deliver savings. As a result, across the country, public services of all kinds are now up for tender in the hope they can be delivered more cheaply by the private sector.
With relatively straightforward things such as refuse collection, there's general agreement that experience to date shows outsourcing can work, and can save the taxpayer money.
But with complex services in education, health or transport, the picture is far less clear.
Michael Robinson investigates the outsourcing of these complex public services and uncovers another, as yet unreported, example of huge profits being earned by major private companies at taxpayers' expense.
Producer: Rob Cave.

  • READ THE PROGRAMME TRANSCRIPT

    After the West Coast rail debacle, Michael Robinson investigates Government outsourcing.

  • Increasing Bank Profits

    Michael Robinson examines the latest tricks which some banks are using to increase profits

  • PFI Profits

    Have taxpayers lost billions of pounds in the secretive resale of PFI contracts?

  • A Taxing Dilemma

    Michael Robinson reveals loopholes which let big businesses slash their UK tax bills.

  • A Bridge Too Far?

    Why do so many British public sector contracts go to foreign companies?

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