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Analysis of funding schemes for transport infrastructure

Specific challenge: Transport infrastructure has been traditionally considered as a precondition for economic development at various geographical levels (local, regional, national, European). At the same time the reduced capability of public budgets to fund directly transport infrastructure has led in recent years to the adoption of funding schemes involving private funds and contractual models known as public-private partnerships (PPP). These schemes have been in operation across Europe for several years already, in different arrangements and with varying degrees of success in each case.

This action should provide a comprehensive analysis of alternative funding schemes (public, PPP or other) based on the existing experiences in different transport sectors and geographical areas, and assess their impact with regard to economic development, value for public money, user benefits, life-cycle investment (including maintenance), efficiency, governance and procurement modalities, etc.

Scope: Proposals should address the following aspects:

      Drawing the lessons to be learned from the actual experience of different forms of PPP and other procurement practices for funding infrastructure projects across the different transport sectors and parts of Europe.

      Identify and analyse possible limitations of PPP and other funding schemes (such as: lack of flexibility, dependence on the banking sector, risk sharing, pricing and social acceptance, etc.) and suggest solutions in order to overcome them.

      Analyse the effects of the recent economic and financial crisis on funding transport infrastructure (including its operation and maintenance) throughout Europe and their impact on the different funding schemes.

      Assess the potential of transport investments and the related funding schemes, including innovative procurement schemes still in a pilot phase, to contribute to economic recovery, growth and employment, in view of future infrastructure needs with a 2050 horizon.

Expected impact: The work is expected to give  policy makers and providers of funding extensive comparative information on the advantages and limitations of different funding schemes for transport infrastructure projects, including innovative schemes still in exploratory phase, thus facilitating decision making on the design and implementation of future infrastructure projects.

It is also expected to improve the awareness of policy makers on the needs for projects serving an efficient and performing transport infrastructure network with the horizon 2050 and their potential contribution to economic recovery, growth and employment.

Type of action: Coordination and Support Actions