Whitehall properties up for grabs in Government ΓÇ£national car boot saleΓÇ¥
The Government is reportedly hoping to raise around ┬ú16 billion worth of funds by selling a number of assets, including a selection of London offices and Whitehall properties.
In an article by The Times, critics spoke of the move as a “national car boot sale” and warned against potential difficulties. Among the complications is the possibility that asset sales would raise much less than they would have done two years ago.
A total of ┬ú13 billion is expected for the sale of property. Most of this is said to be for land, office buildings and council houses. ┬ú2 billion of this figure is also on the cards from central government property, which The Times report is reserved for a number of unidentified Whitehall buildings.
While the commercial property market continues to struggle however, the question remains as to whether the full ┬ú13 billion will be reached.
Other assets up for sale include the Tote, the Dartford Crossing, and the Channel Tunnel rail link.
Philip Shaw, the chief economist at Investec, said: “If the Government managed to sell these assets the ┬ú16 billion would represent a significant slug of the deficit. But, even though it would pay off about 10 per cent of it, it would by no means solve all their problems.”