Jul 4, 2011

Infrastructure Australia updates its National Priority List

Infrastructure Australia updates its National Priority List

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

Minister for Infrastructure & Transport

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

4 July 2011

I welcome the release of Infrastructure Australia’s updated National Priority List setting out the pipeline of projects and policy reforms it believes will best position our nation to compete and prosper in the globalised world of the 21st Century.

I congratulate Sir Rod Eddington and his fellow Council members on the leadership they’re providing and efforts they’re making to drive lasting reforms to the way our nation identifies, plans, finances and uses the infrastructure it needs.

The document published today reflects the changes and extra resources first foreshadowed in this year’s Budget, with Infrastructure Australia working to strengthen its assessment processes, deepen its project pipeline and give greater insight into its deliberations.

In particular, I welcome the additional information incorporated into the latest update, notably for the first time:

  • Infrastructure Australia’s detailed project assessments;
  • Working assessments of Cost-Benefit analyses for all ‘threshold’ and ‘ready to proceed’ projects; and
  • All projects submissions, except those deemed commercial-in-confidence.

These additions give governments and private investors an even greater wealth of information on which to base their long term investment decisions as well as helping to guide finite infrastructure dollars into projects of greatest merit.

Progress over the last three years has been substantial, with total investment in Australia’s transport, water and energy infrastructure up 40 per cent in just two years.

All levels of government need to step up the pace of regulatory and institutional reform in order to unlock increased levels of private sector investment while making sure we get the most out of our existing infrastructure.

Infrastructure Australia will continue to develop its expertise and refine its long term, evidence-based and economy-wide approach to infrastructure development. Future updates of the National Priority List will be release at around this time each year.

The full report to the Council of Australian Government (COAG) can be downloaded from: www.infrastructureaustralia.gov.au/2011_coag/.