Peterborough's £505m private finance initiative deal was the fifth largest UK public-private partnership to reach financial close last year, analysis by Infrastructure Journal has found.

The deal was signed in July 2007 but the total value of its debt finance and equity investment is still only half that of the£1bn Watford health campus PFI which was announced in spring 2007 but is still being negotiated.

Analysts at the magazine predicted that the market for new or rebuild hospital sites would slow down this year, as the majority of expected deals had already reached financial close.

Most healthcare public-private partnerships would instead be small-scale local improvement finance trust schemes.

Globally, the healthcare market represents the second largest sector for public-private partnership contractors, with£5.64bn worth of deals signed in 2007.

The UK, Canada, Australia and Italy have made the most use of the model to harness investment into health infrastructure.

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