Aug 26, 2008

Libs Show their True Colours Once Again

Libs Show their True Colours Once Again


The Hon Anthony Albanese

Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

August 26 2008

Questions asked today by members of the Opposition – including the Shadow Minister for Finance, Competition Policy and Deregulation – are further proof that they don’t believe the Commonwealth has a role to play in building economic infrastructure such as ports and public transport.

This is the same view they took during their 12 years in office – one which resulted in years of under-investment in the nation’s infrastructure and has knocked almost a percentage point off annual economic growth.

Their questions also suggested the Rudd Labor Government would be adopting the previous government’s approach to the allocation of public money: namely, that it would be done using electorate maps.

We have rejected such an approach.

The institutional arrangements we’ve put in place – Infrastructure Australia and the Building Australia Fund – are all about separating infrastructure investment decisions from the short term pressures of the electoral cycle.

Allocations from the Building Australia Fund will be guided by advice from Infrastructure Australia, with the money to go to projects that will deliver the greatest benefits to the national economy.

The independence of Infrastructure Australia will give the community greater confidence that their taxes are funding projects of merit and provide investors with the long term certainty they need.