Transport

It’s not too late to cancel HS2, says IEA expert


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Professor Philip Booth quoted in the Daily Telegraph

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In response to the Public Accounts Committee’s report, published today, that says the High Speed 2 rail project has gone “badly off course,” Dr Richard Wellings, Head of Transport at the Institute of Economic Affairs, says:


“It’s absolutely scandalous that the government hid HS2’s problems from taxpayers and MPs. If the delays and ballooning budget had been revealed earlier there would have been more pressure to cancel this ill-conceived project, potentially saving over £100 billion.

“Unfortunately, senior transport officials have a strong vested interest in the scheme going ahead. HS2 is a lucrative gravy train, providing them with some of the highest paid jobs in the civil service, so it’s not surprising that they resorted to dishonourable behaviour to protect it.

“This damning report hardly inspires confidence in the management of the scheme going forward. It is not too late to cancel HS2 before even more taxpayers’ money is wasted.”



ENDS


NOTES TO EDITORS  


For media enquiries please contact Annabel Denham, Director of Communications: 07540 770774.

For further reading:
Failure to Transform: High-Speed Rail and the Regeneration Myth
The High Speed Gravy Train
High Speed 2: the next government project disaster?


The mission of the Institute of Economic Affairs is to improve understanding of the fundamental institutions of a free society by analysing and expounding the role of markets in solving economic and social problems.

The IEA is a registered educational charity and independent of all political parties.



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