The Knowledge Exchange on Public-Private Partnership
KNOWLEDGE EXCHANGE: FAs IN THE EU
Takeaways from the Knowledge Exchange on Public-Private Partnerships
Discover the main insights from our workshop on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs), which was attended by 64 representatives from various functional areas. This workshop is part of a series of knowledge exchange activities organized under the “Functional Areas in the EU” project.
The knowledge exchange commenced with introductory remarks from Grzegorz Wolszczak, Urban Development Specialist at the World Bank, who provided an overview, covering the main aspects of Public-Private Partnerships and their applicability for functional areas.
Following the introductory session, Bartosz Mysiorski, head of foundation Centrum PPP (PPP Center) in Poland, delivered a presentation on the topic. The session highlighted PPP as a transparent instrument for delivering public services and establishing collaboration between the public and private sector. It also covered challenges, basic structure and characteristics, lessons learned and provided practical insights. Another emphasized message was an opportunity of blending EU and private funds in PPP projects. Overall, the main ideas from the presentation include:
PPPs provide benefits for both public and private sectors, ranging from access to private sector’s know-how and capital, higher quality of infrastructure that is delivered within a planned budget and time. Additionally, a PPP is effective due to stable, long-term contracts, easier access to financing, access to innovation, etc.
Success in using PPPs hinges on several critical factors, including early consultations with private entities, political support, the state of public procurement law, strategic long-term thinking, reliable documentation, and a proper organizational structure. When these elements are in place, there are high chances that the PPP formula will successfully deliver the intended services. Conversely, failure may result from a lack of social capital, trust, and knowledge, as well as ineffective management of PPP contracts.
Countries exhibit diverse approaches to PPP implementation, as evident from the data presented on Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia, and Greece. For instance, Poland and Romania initiated PPP programs around the same time, established a legal framework, and have interest in similar sectors such as roads, water, rail, district heating, and waste management. On the other hand, Greece demonstrated a unique strategy, it developed a specific niche, by successfully leveraging EU funds in PPP projects. Moreover, the country has skillfully created an environment conducive to the involvement of local companies in PPP undertakings.
The case studies presented for knowledge transfer emphasized the existence of both necessary and sufficient conditions for successful PPP implementation. These case studies were carefully chosen to align with audience expectations and preferences outlined in a survey sent out before the event. Based on the results, the discussions revolved around key topics of interest such as roads, waste management, education, and district heating.
The session was followed by a Q&A segment with a lively discussion, the participants exchanged best practices, and sought guidance on various subjects. Topics of discussion included specific thematic projects on waste management, tourism, urban mobility, and urban regeneration. Participants also sought insights on engaging the public sector, conducting public consultations, understanding the legislative framework, and more. Additionally, multiple best practices from Poland were presented to offer practical insights.
If you are interested in delving deeper into the PPPs thematic — from understanding PPP’s characteristics and benefits to learning valuable lessons — you can access both the presentation and the recording below. We encourage you to review the content to gain an overview of the steps involved in structuring and implementing a PPP, along with the challenges and opportunities associated with it. If you are interested in getting to know more case studies, you can access the World Bank database under this link https://ppp.worldbank.org/public-private-partnership/ppp-knowledge-lab
Forthcoming: A guide on ‘Opportunities for Public-Private Partnerships at the Functional Area Level’ will soon be available, and we will share it shortly.