» Monday, October 12, 2009

Government asset sales

Asked how much the Government would be selling off, the PMS said that the Prime Minister had made it clear that selling assets was one part of managing down the deficit. New detail had appeared in the Budget document and in other documentation about the sorts of Government assets that could be sold. We were not rushing into anything in terms of the sale of assets, because it had to be done at a time when the benefits could be realised. What we had announced today was the full list of likely assets, which included local government assets that formed part of the 16billion council housing, business parks and industrial estates; 11billion was from Local Government Assets and the rest was from Central Government Assets, at least an estimated 3billion was from Government businesses and the rest from real estate. Other possible asset sales included the Dartford Crossing, Urenco and the student loan book.

Asked where the money from the asset sales would go, the PMS said it was best to talk to the Treasury for details.

Put that the LGA was disappointed that it hadn’t been consulted, the PMS said that it was not new news that Local Government Assets were going to be disposed of, as it was an ongoing process. The relevant department would liaise with the relevant authorities.

Asked if the councils were compelled to sell their assets, the PMS said no, it was voluntary.

Asked if there was a value of the student loan and Urenco assets, the PMS said that he could not give any indication of that as they were market-sensitive issues.

Asked if a list of the assets would be published, the PMS said that it was best to speak to the Treasury for details.

Asked what proportion we expected to sell within the next two years, the PMS said that we had not specified that.

Asked if there would be a change to the Right to Buy scheme in regards to council housing, the PMS said no; this was about the ongoing sale of council houses that a lot of local authorities did on an ongoing basis.

original source.

Briefing took place at 11:00 | Search for related news

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