New York Financiers Weigh In on Public-Private Partnerships

Source: Tom Curry, Roll Call, The Container blog, June 16, 2014

When members of the House Transportation Committee trekked to this morning to Manhattan for a roundtable discussion on private financing for public projects — also known as public-private partnerships, or P3s — with financiers from J.P Morgan and other firms, they got a message of both opportunity and caution….He cited reasons for the interest: “The attractiveness of U.S. assets, the stable political environment, and the long-term nature of the assets, the stable and predictable returns.” He told the panel “the amount of calls we field on a weekly basis from participants around the globe asking ‘how do we invest in U.S. infrastructure?’ – I’ve never seen anything like it.” A convergence of forces is driving interest in P3s, including low interest rates, pension funds’ searching for predictable returns, and an unwillingness by Congress to increase gasoline taxes to finance infrastructure building. Or as Rep. Michael E. Capuano, D- Mass., put it, “because we in Congress don’t have the courage at the moment to actually do what we have to do on the Highway Trust Fund,” which is facing inadequate revenues from the gas tax….

Foreign Investors Have Much Interest in U.S. P3s
Source: Jim Watts, Bond Buyer, June 16, 2014
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Foreign equity investor interest in U.S. transportation and infrastructure public-private partnerships is on the increase, a special congressional panel on P3s was told by bankers and other experts during a hearing in New York City on Monday. The U.S. market is attractive to foreign investors because of its perceived political stability and a growing number of long-term opportunities, said Jamison Feheley, managing director and head of public finance investment banking at JPMorgan.