Most Read Contributor in Australia, September 2016
From an industry perspective, the budget has provided some
consistency in relation to infrastructure spending with the
government re-emphasising the $50 billion package of infrastructure
spending announced in last year's budget. Australia has
traditionally been regarded as a market with low sovereign risk in
respect of infrastructure spending however recent announcements by
some state governments have cast a shadow over this reputation.
As industry searches for deal flow and decision making
consistency to support further investment, the federal
government's approach to infrastructure spending is
The continued focus in spending on economic infrastructure is
consistent with the government's long term intention to grow
the revenue base which over time should have a positive impact on
the budget's bottom line.
The main new announcement of interest in the budget from an
infrastructure perspective is the establishment of the $5 billion
Northern Australia fund to assist with unlocking the potential in
Australia's northern regions. What will be interesting is how
the funding will be administered, allocated and spent in remote
areas spanning Australia's two largest states –
Queensland and Western Australia and the vastness of the Northern
In the past, there has been confusion as to how money provided
by similar funds was to be characterised and managed - grant,
equity or loan? One size won't fit all with the raft of ports,
rail, pipeline and power projects across WA, QLD and the NT that
will be vying for funding from the fund.
Early clarity on issues such as these and a pragmatic approach
to considering the medium and long term region building benefits of
key projects and not just the project specific business cases and
returns on investment should form part of the government's
process for determining how the fund should be allocated.
Infrastructure spending in remote areas can attract a price premium
or may not deliver required returns on a standalone project basis.
Factors such as these should not on their own prevent projects from
proceeding if utilisation of fund moneys will help to unlock
demonstrable and significant incidental benefits to development in
the northern region.
This publication does not deal with every important topic or
change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute
for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's
specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of
interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice
relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named
To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.
Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.
The Council announced planning policies to encourage more inner suburban retirement village and aged care development.
Some comments from our readers… “The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable” “I often find critical information not available elsewhere” “As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).