Montague named PFI head

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The Independent Online
Adrian Montague, a senior project finance specialist with investment bank Dresdner Kleinwort Benson, has been appointed to head the Government's Private Finance Initiative, it was confirmed yesterday.

Mr Montague, head of global project finance at the bank, will become chief executive of the Treasury's PFI Taskforce next month on a fixed salary of pounds 160,000. He will be on a two-year contract and will report to the Paymaster General, Geoffrey Robinson.

The 49-year-old banker, chosen from a shortlist of three candidates, described the job as a tremendous challenge: "You do have to feel a desire to help out in the public sector to hold a position of this type."

Mr Robinson, who dismissed Alastair Ross Goobey, the chairman of the Private Finance Panel, when Labour came into power, likened the job to a thicket through which Mr Montague would need to clear a path.

Mr Montague will recruit a team of around eight private sector project specialists and will have the responsibility of signing off commercially viable projects before they are put out to tender.