The first decade of the 21st century has seen a significant increase in the use of Private Finance Initiatives (PFI) or Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) on the Belgian market. Ranging from classic PPP/PFI sectors, such as transport infrastructure, urban regeneration and housing to newer fields such as schools, sports infrastructure, development of brownfields and blackpoints, health care or student housing, an important PPP/PFI culture has developed in Belgium.
We have been at the forefront of this development, assisting both government and private clients (sponsors, financiers, (sub)contractors, advisors) on several of the larger PPP/PFI deals. Through a combination of expertise in real estate and environmental matters and in public (procurement) law as well as in insurance, project finance and private equity matters, we are able to offer our clients full legal services in support of their participation in PPP/PFI projects.
We are proficient in setting up project structures, undertaking legal feasibility studies and risk allocation exercises (TRAM), advising on fiscal, financial, corporate, procurement or real estate optimizations, supporting legal project management, assisting in negotiations with partners, share- and stakeholders, drafting tender or bid documentation, etc.
We have in-depth knowledge of those legal techniques which are key to any PPP/PFI-project, for example, concessions (BOO, BOT, DBFM(O), public domain), joint ventures (SPV, ProjectCo), public procurement procedures, subsidies, loans and security structures, service level (maintenance and facility services, EPC) and interface agreements, budget and ESA95 regulations, etc.