The Isle of Man Government’s ‘Major Projects Board’ will be chaired by Barry O’Driscoll, following his appointment as a specialist advisor to the Treasury.

Mr O’Driscoll, who lives in Gloucestershire, is a civil engineer and senior business leader with more than 25 years’ experience of civil engineering design and construction, predominantly in the UK infrastructure sector.

He also currently sits on the Irish Government’s ‘Major Projects Advisory Group’ within the Department of Public Expenditure, and is an independent advisor to the UK’s National Highways among other strategic roles.

The Major Projects Board has been established to provide the Council of Ministers with increased oversight and control over the approval and subsequent delivery of capital projects costing more than £3 million, as well as those which may be high-profile or perceived to be high-risk.

Treasury Minister. Dr Alex Allinson MHK, said: ‘This administration recognised that the way the Isle of Man Government handles high-value schemes needed improved scrutiny and greater expertise, and changes are now being made which will deliver better outcomes for our community.

‘The appointment of a chairman with Mr O’Driscoll’s experience and knowledge will place the Major Projects Board on a solid footing, and I’m very much looking forward to working with him.’

The Major Projects Board will provide advice and commentary on Departments’ proposals, including a commercially-focused review of critical elements, and then the monitoring of cost and delivery.

Talking about his new role, Mr O-Driscoll said: ‘I’m really looking forward to assisting the Isle of Man Government to deliver better outcomes from its diverse portfolio of projects.

‘The establishment of the Major Project Board is an important first step in this process, and I will be working with Treasury colleagues to ensure the Board has all the required skills and experience to benefit these projects.’

Responsibility for project delivery will remain with Departments in all cases, with the Project Management Unit in the Department of Infrastructure continuing to provide support on some schemes.