September 24, 2018 / 10:36 PM / 21 days ago

UK to take over Liverpool hospital build after Carillion collapse - Sky News

(Reuters) - The British government will step in to bail out a 335 million pound ($439 million) new hospital in the city of Liverpool, after the collapse of Carillion, which was overseeing the deal, Sky News reported on Monday.

FILE PHOTO - Contractors walk inside Carillion's Royal Liverpool Hospital site in Liverpool, Britain, January 16, 2018. REUTERS/Phil Noble

An announcement by ministers on the termination of the Royal Liverpool Hospital private finance initiative deal and taking it into full public ownership is expected to be made within days, Sky said. (bit.ly/2N07fo9)

“Our Board is meeting today and they will be discussing the options available, including the option to terminate the project agreement,” a National Health Service (NHS) trust spokesperson told Reuters in an emailed statement on Tuesday.

Carillion, which provided services in defence, education, health and transport, collapsed in January, becoming the largest construction bankruptcy in British history. It left creditors and the firm’s pensioners facing steep losses and put thousands of jobs at risk.

Britain’s biggest labour union recently called for a criminal investigation into key individuals involved.

An announcement about the future of the hospital could come ahead of opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s speech to the party’s annual conference in Liverpool, according to Sky News. Corbyn has long been opposed to public-private partnerships and has said key industries would be nationalised should Labour win power.

The Royal Liverpool Hospital and Carillion did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Reporting by Mekhla Raina and Rishika Chatterjee in Bengaluru, Editing by Rosalba O'Brien and Shailesh Kuber

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