Billions of pounds of Government liabilities from private finance initiatives will no longer be listed on a single balance sheet, it emerged yesterday.I was pleased to note that Tory and LibDem spokesmen are criticising this change in presentation. This quote sums things up nicely:
David Smith, an economist at Willems de Broe, said the move was part of a "remarkable degradation" in the data that is available to judge the Government's financial position. "It is hard to see who benefits from the change, apart from Treasury ministers with something to hide," he said.A Treasury mouthpiece "declined to comment on the reasons behind the move". I guess he wants to keep his job.
Government accounts should be prepared using the same rigorous procedures that the law imposes on the private sector. Any more of this and I'll start to think that Gordon Brown is angling for a job with the Scottish Executive.