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15-year Infrastructure Plan gains industry support

Independent infrastructure advisor, Infrastructure Australia, has welcomed the Federal Government’s response to the 15-year Australian Infrastructure Plan, which will modify the way drivers are taxed for new road projects, with road maintenance a key part of a wide-ranging review of the nation’s infrastructure.

Independent infrastructure advisor, Infrastructure Australia, has welcomed the Federal Government’s response to the 15-year Australian Infrastructure Plan, which will modify the way drivers are taxed for new road projects, with road maintenance a key part of a wide-ranging review of the nation’s infrastructure.Independent infrastructure advisor, Infrastructure Australia, has welcomed the Federal Government’s response to the 15-year Australian Infrastructure Plan, which will modify the way drivers are taxed for new road projects, with road maintenance a key part of a wide-ranging review of the nation’s infrastructure.

“The Australian Government response supports the Australian Infrastructure Plan which sets the nation’s long-term infrastructure reform agenda,” said Infrastructure Australia Chief Executive, Philip Davies.

“Taking the 2015 Australian Infrastructure Audit as its evidence base, the Australian Infrastructure Plan provided 78 recommendations to address today’s infrastructure gaps and meet the global challenges of tomorrow.

“The Government’s response to the Plan is an important first step on the journey towards infrastructure reform, and we will continue to provide robust, independent advice on how these reforms should be progressed.”

Key recommendations from the Infrastructure Plan that are supported in the Government’s response include a greater focus on metropolitan rail in our capital cities by working with state governments to develop urban rail plans for Australia’s five major cities; increased investment in planning and project development work to bring forward business cases for the projects now listed on the Infrastructure Priority List; using incentive payments to drive infrastructure reform at the state and territory level; examining opportunities to streamline infrastructure funding streams to deliver greater efficiency and reduce overlap; and working to protect transport corridors and precincts for the future.

“We are particularly pleased to see the Government commit to progressing the important issue of road market reform and developing a National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy,” Mr. Davies said.

“As we outlined in the Plan, it is clear that the current funding model to build and maintain Australian roads is broken – it is inefficient, unsustainable and unfair.

“We advocated for fuel excise and registration fees to be abolished, and road users to only be charged for what they use. We are therefore pleased to see the Government commit to an independently led process on the potential reform options and models for road market reform.

“We will certainly be making further contributions on the benefits of moving to a fairer, user-pays approach for roads.”

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