Under Severe Strain

Beleben has been looking at the NAO report into HS2.

In particular he says:

The report did not address the effects and risks of Great Britain leaving the European Union, and it would appear that the NAO considered it a zero probability event. In the non-binding referendum that took place on 23 June 2016, 51.9% of votes were for Brexit. The value of sterling fell after the referendum result became known.

Although presented as a ‘British’ project, HS2 would be largely built with imported materials, equipment, and labour, so forex risks from Brexit could be significant. If there were a ‘tariff war’ and restrictions on foreign labour, there could easily be a cost uplift of £10 billion or more.

You can read the whole article here, and the rest of Beleben’s blog here.

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4 comments on “Under Severe Strain
  1. It’s obvious that reasoned argument is not going to stop hs2,petitions are seen as a waste of time,our MPs have failed to provide effective opposition so WHAT NOW

    • To state the bloomin’ obvious, just how is it possible for a plan with no apparent cost ceiling, but a widely-believed cost of £80bn.-£90bn.,be pushed ahead by this Govt. with only maybe 15% public support?
      There is not one independent Report in favour., Does the “cost-envelope”, whatever that means, of £55.7bn. mean anything at all, or will this Govt. allow HS2 Ltd. to spend whatever they like. We need to know now before this farce becomes reality.

  2. Is capacity the big problem ? If it is then why not put more coaches on trains .Then they say the platforms will need to be made longer at a major costs .Is the answer to make walk through coaches so people would just walk through coaches at stations with short platforms saving building longer platforms .

  3. I would also like to hear Beleben’s view on Brexit versus the EC’s Fourth Rail Package http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/policies/4th-railway-package/ (a summary that hides the most politically contentious aspects of the proposal.)
    Is the UK going to negotiate to stay in the Rail Package, including the shift to European run Infrastructure Managers who will “control all the functions at the heart of the rail network – including infrastructure investment planning, day-to-day operations and maintenance, as well as timetabling” including the “transfer of competences from Member States to the European Railway Agency (ERA) “? (see Polis summary http://www.polisnetwork.eu/publicnews/417/48/The-European-Economic-and-Social-Committee-EESC-held-a-public-hearing-on-the-4th-Railway-package-in-Brussels-on-24-April-2013

    Will The UK remain part of the EC’s desired “Single European Railway Area’, with all of the controls and ‘take-overs’ envisaged by the EC?

    Will the UK negotiate to keep the bits of this that it likes, but abandon other bits such as the ‘last mile’ attempts by the EC to get control of the development rights around stations?

    Will this be a key item for negotiation in relation to the settlement with Ireland?

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