Magazine article Public Finance

Ministers Set to Back Open-Book Outsourcing Deals

Magazine article Public Finance

Ministers Set to Back Open-Book Outsourcing Deals

Article excerpt

The government is prepared to back the introduction of open-book accounting for public sector outsourcing contracts, a senior figure in the industry has said.

Speaking to Public Finance after a meeting between the CBI and government about reforms to contracting agreements, Jim Bligh, the business group's head of public services, said there was a need to 'move very far forward' on transparency.

Outsourcing deals have been under scrutiny after a host of high-profile failures, including the revelation that two firms - G4S and Serco - had billed the Ministry of Justice for millions of pounds worth of electronic tagging services that had not been carried out.

The CBI has proposed the introduction of open-book accounting for costs, charges and profit margins between contractors and Whitehall customers in the future, as well as allowing the National Audit Office to scrutinise the deals. …

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