Infrastructure Australia (IA) was implemented by the Rudd Government to advise governments, investors and owners of infrastructure on:
- Australia’s current and future needs and priorities relating to nationally significant infrastructure
- Policy, pricing and regulatory issues that may impact on the utilisation of infrastructure
- Impediments to the efficient utilisation of national infrastructure networks
- Options and reforms, including regulatory reforms, to make the utilisation of national infrastructure networks more efficient
- The needs of users of infrastructure
- Mechanisms for financing investments in infrastructure
IA’s immediate tasks are to:
- Conduct an audit to determine the adequacy, capacity and condition of nationally significant water, transport, energy, and communications infrastructure
- Produce an Infrastructure Priority List
- Produce best practice, nationally consistent guidelines for Public Private Partnerships
In addition Infrastructure Australia may advise on harmonisation of policy and law in relation to infrastructure development, utilisation and investment. IA will also have responsibilities for the Building Australia Fund. IA’s focus will relate to issues of national productivity. The government views infrastructure as the platform for growth and continued improvement of Australia’s standard of living. Additionally it is seen as a crucial element of environmental protection and alleviating social disadvantage.
On September 2, Infrastructure Australia issued two discussion papers:
Discussion Paper1: Australia’s Future Infrastructure Requirements
Issues for discussion are an assessment of the features and goals of Australian infrastructure: Physical, Digital and Collaborative; the goals and strategic priorities that meet the broader economic, social and environmental goals of IA; problems that hinder IA goals, including their impacts, immediate and underlying causes and the prioritisation of solutions that will address those problems.
Discussion Paper 2: Public Private Partnerships
The focus of this discussion paper is on how Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) could optimise public infrastructure investment, as well as how to improve the process of consideration and implementation of PPPs. IA in conjunction with COAG aim to improve PPP policy and processes for incorporation into the National PPP Policy and Guidelines.<[>Issues for discussion include aim to identify issues that hinder IA’s social, economic and environmental goals. These include the processes of consideration of PPPs, inconsistencies of those processes across State, Territory and Commonwealth, overseas interest and inefficiencies. Additionally the discussion paper seeks to deepen its understanding of problems in order to target action effectively. The discussion seeks to have a detailed understanding of the impacts, causal factors, solutions and priorities relating to PPP policy and procedures.
Submissions for both discussion papers are due October 15, 2008.
Below are links to the Discussion Papers and relevant information.
Please contact your Hawker Britton consultant if you would like more information.