Government risk assessment of Carillion published

The Public Accounts Select Committee has published a report into the risk assessments of Carillion in the run up to its failure. Here's a snippet:

"The Carillion assessments show that:

  • Although Carillion had been rated Amber owing to performance against contracts with the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Justice, it was not until after Carillion issued a profit warning in July 2017 that Government downgraded Carillion to Red. It appears the Government was not aware of Carillion’s financial distress until this point.
  • In November 2017, officials recommended a provisional Black rating for Carillion. However, following representations from the company, the Cabinet Office did not confirm the designation. Carillion collapsed less than two months later."

On a very strange (but welcome) transparency note, even the assessments themselves were made public.

What it appears to me is that by November 2017, plans should have been privately put in motion to forestall a potential (though not certain yet) entrance into administration, ie how to handle ongoing contracts, securing access to sites, etc. That for me is much more important than knowing exactly when the rating moved from amber to red and then finally to black.

On a final note: who and when had access to these risk assessment reports, ie only the Cabinet Office or the wider public sector which could have been tendering contracts with Carillion as a bidder.

Links I Liked [Public Procurement]

1. Location, location, location. Interesting opinion from Advocate-General Szupnar in Case C-552/13 Grupo Hospitalario Quiron* vs Departament de Sanidad del Gobierno Vasco & Instituto de Religiosas Siervas de Jesus de la Caridad. The AG found (correctly) that health care services cannot be restricted to certain territorial boundaries unless under specific public health grounds. I find it deliciously ironic that a case which is 100% Spanish would be solved in accordance with EU law, just because its value is above the EU thresholds.

* One of the biggest if not the biggest Spanish health care providers.

2. Are cities getting it all wrong in public management risk? Excellent post by Sascha Haselmayer, one of the guys behind CityMart. I interviewed him once for another of my podcasts and would love to have him back on the PPP now that is firmly working with procurement of innovation.

3. National Audit Office (UK) is calling for greater access to outsourced services costs...and profits. This is an interesting one. In general I am in favour of more transparency in procurement, but I am yet to fully commit behind this idea. Albert will disagree of course.

4. Romania looks to the USA for help in curbing corruption. I agree with Peter Smith on this. Why on earth is a EU Member State knocking on the United States door for help dealing with corruption? They could have looked at what Slovakia is doing for example. Plus, the OECD is based in Paris if memory serves me well... 

5. Columbia University divests from private prisons. Very timely based on my interview with Amy Ludlow.