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  • Managing Contingent Liabilities in Public-Private Partnerships

    Practice in Australia, Chile, and South Africa

    Practice in Australia, Chile, and South Africa

    Managing Contingent Liabilities in Public-Private Partnerships

    New Cover Template Format

    Timothy Irwin

    Tanya Mokdad


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  • Managing Contingent Liabilities in Public-Private PartnershipsPractice in Australia, Chile, and South Africa

  • Managing Contingent Liabilities in Public-Private PartnershipsPractice in Australia, Chile, and South Africa

    Timothy Irwin

    Tanya Mokdad

  • 2010 The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / The World Bank

    1818 H Street NW Washington DC 20433 Telephone: 202-473-1000 Internet: E-mail:

    All rights reserved

    The findings, interpretations, and conclusions expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Executive Direc-tors of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / The World Bank or the governments they represent.

    The World Bank does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included in this work. The boundaries, colors, denominations, and other information shown on any map in this work do not imply any judgment on the part of The World Bank concerning the legal status of any territory or the endorse-ment or acceptance of such boundaries.

    Rights and Permissions

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    For permission to photocopy or reprint any part of this work, please send a request with complete information to the Copyright Clearance Cen-ter Inc., 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923, USA; telephone: 978-750-8400; fax: 978-750-4470; Internet:

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  • ConTenTS

    ACknowLedgMents i

    AbbreviAtions And ACronyMs iii

    Foreword v

    suMMAry vii

    1. introduCtion 1

    2. AustrALiA 7

    Approval 10

    Analysis 12

    Reporting 13

    3. ChiLe 17

    Approval 20

    Analysis 22

    Reporting 24

  • 4. south AFriCA 27

    Approval 28

    Analysis 30

    Reporting 32

    5. PrACtiCes For other Countries 35

    Approval 38

    Analysis 40

    Reporting 42

    APPendiX 1. Chilean Ministry of Finances Measurement and valuation of guarantees 45

    APPendiX 2. table of south African PPPs 49

    reFerenCes 53

  • i


    This report has been prepared for the World Bank with funding from the Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility (PPIAF) by Timothy Irwin, Director at LECG (formerly, Senior Economist at the World Bank), and Tanya Mokdad, Managing Economist at LECG under the supervision of M. Baher El-Hifnawi, Lead Transport Economist in the East Asia and Pacific Sustainable Development Department of the World Bank. The report has benefited from comments from Glenn Boyle, Brent Chandler, William Dachs, Ding Ding, David Duarte, Israel Fainboim, Ronald Fischer, Richard Fos-ter, Ben Gericke, Clive Harris, Eduardo Ley, Abdul Khan, Glenn Maguire, Jorge Montecinos, Paul Reddel, Alejandro Simone, Gerd Schwartz, Sham-suddin Tareq, and Clemencia Torres de Mstle. They are not responsible for any remaining errors. Earlier discussions benefited from contributions from Glenn Jenkins, Soodershan Gooptu, Nina Budina, Hana Polackova Brixi, and Beatriz Arizu de Jablonski. Support from Janique Racine, Amsale Bumbaugh and Cristina Hernandez in producing and publishing the report is gratefully acknowledged.

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    AbbrevIATIonS And ACronyMS

    AASB Australian Accounting Standards BoardCAPM Capital-Asset Pricing ModelDTI Department of Trade and IndustryIASB International Accounting Standards BoardIFRS International Financial Reporting StandardsIFRIC International Financial Reporting Interpretation CommitteeIMF International Monetary FundPPIAF Public Private Infrastructure Advisory FacilityPPP Public-Private PartnershipSEITA Southern and Eastern Integrated Transport Authority

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    Sweeping the dirt under the rug is never considered a wise strategy, be it for an individual, a community or society. Ultimately, the mess balloons. The clean up takes longer and winds up being more expensive. Contingent liabilities in Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) are often of this nature. If they are not properly identified, assessed and dealt with in a transparent way, the debt can easily spiral out of control. What on the surface appears as an attractive deal to engage the private sector in infrastructure services can wind up as an unmanageable financial burden for the country and its finance officials. Hence, the prudent management of contingent liabilities in PPPs is a necessary element of public policy, so that missteps of today do not end up burdening the potential real development and growth of tomorrow.

    This volume describes the evolution of good practices in three countries Australia, Chile and the Republic of South Africa, all of which have been on the forefront of assigning risks to contracting parties best suited to mitigate those risks. The country case studies provide succinct analysis of the issues, challenges and outcomes, and the fourth chapter suggests good practices for other countries interested in promoting PPPs in infrastructure.

    The volume is therefore an extremely useful source of information and knowledge for any policy maker or sector specialist interested in learning more about the dos and donts of contingent liability management in PPP transactions.

    N. Vijay JagannathanSector Manager, Infrastructure UnitSustainable Development DepartmentEast Asia and Pacific RegionThe World Bank

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    Governments that use public-private partnerships (PPPs) to build infrastruc-ture usually assume contingent liabilities relating, for example, to early con-tract termination or to debt and revenue guarantees. Deciding whether to assume these liabilities and, if so, determining how to value, monitor, and limit them is difficult for most governments. This report describes how gov-ernments in Australia, Chile, and South Africa have tackled these problems, and discusses whether other governments, including those with less admin-istrative capacity, should adopt similar practices.

    All three countries rely on careful project preparation, competitive bid-ding, and a review of proposed PPPs by a specialized unit in the Ministry of Finance. South Africa, for example, requires the Treasury to approve PPP proposals at four stages before a contract is signed. The proposals that seek the Treasurys approval must discuss contingent liabilities. A PPP manual and a set of standard contractual terms guide the development of the PPPs and thus limit the contingent liabilities they create. Chile is notable for mea-suring and valuing contingent liabilities associated with revenue (and previ-ously exchange-rate) guarantees for toll-road and airport concessions, and for publishing the results of the measurement and valuation every year. Aus-tralian governments are notable for restricting their risk-bearing in many recent projects to risks that they can control, thus minimizing their con-tingent liabilities. They also publish PPP contracts and project summaries and prepare financial reports according to International Financial Reporting Standards, which reduces the temptation to use PPPs to disguise fiscal costs.

    Other governments that want to improve the management of contingent liabilities associated with PPPs might adopt some of these policies, includ-ing multistage review of proposed PPPs by people in the Ministry of Finance who have expertise in PPPs and fiscal management; quantification of certain

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    contingent liabilities, especially when quantification is likely to influence the decision whether to incur the liability; and publication of PPP contracts and summary descriptions of their financial implications. The adoption of modern accrual accounting is helpful in Australia, but it raises bigger issues than the management of PPP-related contingent liabilities.

  • 1



    Chapmans Peak Drive runs along the side of a mountain near Cape Town in South Africa. Described as impossible when first proposed, the road was nevertheless hacked and blasted out of the steep cliffs of the mountain between 1915 and 1922. It has always been vulnerable, however, to falling rocks and other debris, and in January 2000 the Western Cape Provincial government closed the road after fire and heavy rain caused major rockslides and the death of a passenger. To improve the road, the government used a public-private partnership (PPP), an arrangement that was then becoming popular in South Africa. The government called for proposals in August 2001. Two consortia bid, and in May 2003, the government and the Entilini concession company signed a 30-year concession contract. Entilini repaired the road and, using state-of-the-art modeling