Infrastructure spending levels across Australia revealed

NSW is leading Australia in public infrastructure investment, according to the 2019 Australian Infrastructure Budget Monitor, released last week by Infrastructure Partnerships Australia.

“For three years running, NSW has stayed ahead on the national league tables with an impressive infrastructure agenda,” Infrastructure Partnerships Australia chief executive Adrian Dwyer said.

“Over the next four years, NSW will spend more than $71 billion on projects right across the state, 18.4 per cent of total planned budget expenditure. Victoria is close on the NSW Government’s heels, with more than $53 billion committed to infrastructure over the next four years, a massive $13.4 billion increase from Victoria’s last budget.”

NSW and Victoria dominate Australia’s infrastructure funding in overall spend and share of total expenditure this year, accounting for 68 per cent of total infrastructure funding across Australia.

The Australian Infrastructure Budget Monitor shows that $185 billion in taxpayer money is being invested in Australian infrastructure, a significant increase on the $153 billion total national funding level seen last year. NSW and Victoria this year contributed a combined total of $125 billion in budgeted spending.

“It’s good to see that despite significant revenue pressure, states and territories across Australia have responded to our call to continue pressing the pedal on infrastructure spending,” Dwyer said.

“Australia faces an unprecedented population and productivity growth challenge that must be met with sustained spending on transport, hospital, and school projects right across the country.”

States who embrace asset recycling have been able to tap into a major pool of investment to fund large-scale infrastructure projects, shows the 2019 report.

“The sale of TAB Corp and the partial commercialisation of Landgate will help to bolster infrastructure spending in WA and put the state in a good position for continued economic growth,” Dwyer said.

“While there was no change in Western Australia’s ranking from last year, the McGowan Government is making sensible reforms to sustain higher levels of infrastructure funding in the future.”

Transport major contributor to QLD infrastructure spend

The Palaszczuk Government has released a state infrastructure report detailing $49.5 billion in infrastructure spending over the next four years, with around one-third dedicated to transport projects.

An update to the State Infrastructure Plan (SIP) for 2019 revealed that the Queensland Government’s underspend for the 201819 year was near zero, resulting in the state’s best performance in 10 years.

The update also stated that the government’s flagship Cross River Rail project will support an average of 1500 jobs each year during construction.

The government is working with a project consortium led by Pulse to help deliver the project.

Cross River Rail will deliver a 5.9-kilometre twin tunnel underground rail line with four new stations running from Dutton Park to Bowen Hills in Brisbane. Other major transport works include the delivery of three new Gold Coast train stations at Pimpama, Helensvale North and Worongary/Merrimac.

This investment is expected to contribute to various infrastructure plans, including “transformative transport and communications projects”. The Palaszczuk Government has been actively reducing its under-expenditure rates since 2015, according to Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick.

“Since 2015, around 207,000 new jobs have been created for Queenslanders, and this updated SIP highlights there are plenty more on the way,” Dick said.

“60 per cent of this year’s infrastructure budget is being invested outside Greater Brisbane, where it will support around 25,500 jobs.”