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NHS PFIs ‘will go ahead as planned’ despite credit crunch, says Gordon Brown

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The Government has admitted looking at some Private Finance Initiative projects (PFI) that may be under threat because of the credit crunch.

Reports claim some PFIs may need to be underwritten by the Government because they rely on funding from banks.

But prime minister Gordon Brown said that although the Treasury is ‘looking at the PFI issues’, he stressed ‘all health projects’ would be going ahead as planned.

Labour MP for North Norfolk Ian Gibson at Commons question time raised concerns that a PFI contract with the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital would no longer be going ahead.

Mr Brown replied: ‘The Treasury is looking at the PFI issues that arise from the loss of lending capacity in the economy but I’m assured by the Health Secretary the project you are talking about is one that is going ahead.’

Another Labour MP, Charlotte Atkins, from Staffordshire Moorlands, also expressed concern over funding of projects in her constituency.

Mr Brown said: ‘We are not cutting investment in them, they are moving ahead and all health service investment we want to see happen has been budgeted for and will go forward.’

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