The Public Accounts Committee will examine the Sale of the Green Investment Bank on Wednesday 20 December 2017.
Scope of the inquiry
The UK Green Investment Bank was created in 2012 to attract private funding for green investments. This followed estimations that the UK would need investment of £330 billion in the green economy by 2020.
In June 2015, the Secretary of State for Business, Industry and Skills announced proposals to part-privatise the bank in order to attract more capital. Thereafter, following a competitive bid, the bank was sold in August 2017 to Australian infrastructure investors Macquarie Ltd.
A recent report from the National Audit Office found that government had a very clear idea of what they were setting up the bank to do. It attracted good investment, with £2.50 of private money invested for every £1 of government money.
However, the Bank was sold at the lower end of its valuation range, and the sale process—run by UK Government Investments—took more than twice as long as anticipated. This could have affected the Bank’s confidence to invest.
The Public Accounts Committee will ask representatives from Macquarie, UK Government Investments and the Department of Business, Enterprise and Industrial Strategy about the mission of the Bank, its sale, and how Macquarie envisages operating it in the future. This is the Committee’s last inquiry of 2017.