I pay tribute to Sir Rod Eddington for whom today is his last day as Chair of Infrastructure Australia.
Mr Eddington can be very proud of his achievements as the inaugural Chair of Infrastructure Australia, appointed when it was created in 2008. He brought experience, dedication and energy to the role, which he saw as giving back something to Australia. He refused to accept any personal remuneration for the position.
As Chair, Mr Eddington oversaw the first ever comprehensive National Audit of Australia’s infrastructure, the publication of annual infrastructure priority lists to create a pipeline of projects, uniform Public Private Partnership Guidelines, reforms to streamline bidding for projects, the Infrastructure Tax Incentive for Designated Infrastructure Projects, the National Ports Strategy, the National Land Freight Strategy, the Urban Transport Strategy, the Bingara Accord on Australian Rural Roads and much more.
When Infrastructure Australia was created Australia ranked 20th of 25 OECD countries for investment in infrastructure as a proportion of our economy. Today, Australia is ranked 1st and Mr Eddington’s leadership of the national debate has played a significant role in that extraordinary achievement.
Mr Eddington played a strong and independent role as Chair of Infrastructure Australia.
I am disappointed the Coalition commitment to reappoint Mr Eddington has not been fulfilled and that the legislation before the Senate undermines the independent status of Infrastructure Australia.
I wish Sir Rod Eddington well in his ongoing contribution to our nation. He is a much admired and respected Australian.