Updated Poll on Canadian Infrastructure Deficit Shows Ongoing Support for Public-Private Partnerships



    - Results of nationwide survey revealed at annual P3 conference in
    Toronto -

    TORONTO, Nov. 26 /CNW/ - An overwhelming majority (88%) of Canadians
polled in a national survey believe that present-day governments are having
trouble keeping pace with demands for new or improved public infrastructure
and services. Nearly two-thirds (63%) of Canadians believe the private sector
can help resolve this crisis by getting involved in financing and building the
much-needed new hospitals, schools, roads, water and sewage treatment
facilities, transit, and electricity services that Canada needs in the 21st
century.
    "The results of four annual surveys are consistent and clear," said David
McFadden, Director, and Communications Committee Chair for the Canadian
Council on Public-Private Partnerships and Partner at Gowlings Lafleur
Henderson LLP. "Canadians from coast to coast believe that their federal,
provincial and municipal governments are not keeping pace with demand for new
or improved public infrastructure and services."
    "Once again, the results of our annual poll indicate a strong majority of
Canadians support partnerships between private sector companies and
governments to address demands for new or improved public infrastructure and
services," added Dale Richmond, President of The Canadian Council on
Public-Private Partnerships and former President & CEO of the OMERS public
pension plan.
    The results of the survey, conducted by Environics Research Group for the
Canadian Council on Public-Private Partnerships, were announced at the 15th
Annual Conference on Public-Private Partnerships in Toronto today.
    Speaking at the conference, Canada's Finance Minister Jim Flaherty
expressed the Canadian government's support for public-private partnerships
(PPPs).
    "Whether it is British Columbia's Pacific Gateway project or New
Brunswick's Trans Canada highway project, building modern, world-class
infrastructure promotes economic growth and international competitiveness for
Canada's economy," said Canada's Finance Minister, Jim Flaherty. "And
public-private partnerships can play an important role in getting much of this
work done now without putting a bigger burden on Canadian taxpayers."
    The survey found that a majority of Canadians support private sector
involvement in a wide range of public services including the financing and
construction of public hospitals (63%), operation of non-health related
services in public hospitals, such as cleaning and cafeterias (74%),
construction and maintenance of roads (73%), construction and operation of
public recreation facilities such as ice rinks and pools (71%) and operation
of public transit systems (66%).
    Support for PPPs is strongest in Quebec (76%), an increase of 8% since
2004, followed by the Prairie provinces (65%), and Atlantic Canada (63%).
Support in Ontario and British Columbia stands at 56%.
    A review of the survey results shows that this majority support for
public-private partnerships extends virtually across the board, irrespective
of federal voting preference, or region. Even respondents who are members of
unions, be they public (57%) or private (64%) sector union members, as well as
respondents whose households contain a union member (61%), continue to support
P3s.
    2,047 Canadians were interviewed by telephone by Environics Research from
September 17 to October 14, 2007. The results are estimated to be accurate to
within plus or minus 2.2 percentage points in 19 out of 20. The margin of
error is greater for results pertaining to regional or socio-demographic
subgroups of the total sample.
    The Annual Conference on Private-Public Partnerships is The Canadian
Council for Public-Private Partnerships' premier event. This year the
Conference and related events, which are taking place on November 26 and 27,
is hosting over 750 distinguished leaders, speakers and delegates from Canada
and around the globe, including England, France, Republic Of Ireland, Uruguay,
Spain, Germany, Australia, Northern Ireland, Singapore, Israel, and the United
States. The theme of this year's conference is "Driving Performance in
Canadian PPP."

    Backgrounder: For a backgrounder on the poll results, go to:
    www.pppcouncil.ca





For further information:

For further information: or to request an interview with a conference
presenter, please contact: Pierre Leduc, pleduc@tsa.ca, Cell (416) 859-8562;
or Orli Namian, onamian@tsa.ca, Cell (647) 262-6776

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Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships

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