Dr Stephen Farry MLA said: “It is disappointing but not surprising that the Workplace 2010 procurement process has been dropped. There should be no ideological difficulty in bringing private sector finance to make our public sector run more efficiently. The key issue should be what works and what doesn’t.
“Clearly, the current economic downturn is overturning many assumptions that had been made in a different climate. However, the Workplace 2010 contract was in trouble independently of the economic downturn, with concerns over a lack of competitive tension between the remaining two bidders.
“There is an evolving body of evidence in terms of when and how to employ private finance. There will be lessons to be learnt from Workplace 2010.
“Meanwhile, DFP officials are due to appear before the Assembly’s Finance Committee on Friday and will have many questions to answer, not least how much money has been wasted on this failed exercise.”