- PPP Distress and Fiscal Contingent Liabilities in South Asia
Since the early 1990s, public-private partnerships (PPPs) in infrastructure provision have been expanding around the world and in South Asia. Well-structured PPPs can unleash efficiency gains in the provision of infrastructure. But PPPs create liabilities for governments, including contingent liabilities. Providing infrastructure through PPPs is preferred to public provision if the efficiency gains offset the higher cost of private financing and the unexpected public liabilities that PPPs may create. This paper attempts to assess the fiscal risks from contingent liabilities assumed by South Asian governments owing to their current stock of PPPs in infrastructure. First, it analyzes the drivers of PPP distress. Second, it simulates scenarios of fiscal risks for South Asian governments from risky PPPs. Third, it studies specific PPP contract designs and their relationship with early termination in South Asia to draw lessons for future PPP contract structuring.