The Government of New Zealand will continue pushing ahead with its NZD40 billion (US$28.6 billion) infrastructure plans by creating a new National Infrastructure Commission to lead more public-private partnership (PPP) projects and get faster access to new schools, hospitals and roading.
Initial projects to be considered as a PPP include:
Defence Estate Refresh: a NZD1.7 billion (US$1.22 billion) project to modernise and upgrade defence bases throughout the country.
The recently announced NZD1.4 billion (US$1 billion) re-development of Dunedin Hospital.
East West Link: NZD1.9 billion (US$1.36 billion) project linking State Highway 20 and
State Highway 1 in Auckland.
The NZD50 million (US$35.8 million) rebuild of Whangarei Boys High School as part of a larger school development package.
Penlink: Construction of a new local road linking the middle of the Whangaparaoa Peninsula with State Highway 2 at Redvale.
Waikeria Prison: A new 1,500 bed facility due to commence procurement this year.
The infrastructure commission would be responsible for expanding the number of PPPs. National would merge two units from the Treasury to form the core of the commission, with an additional NZD2.5 million a year in funding to operate it.
The Commission will jointly invest with councils and private companies in non-government owned infrastructure like local roads, water networks and ultra-fast broadband networks.
National Party Infrastructure spokesperson Steven Joyce says, said:
“National has a great track record of delivering transformative infrastructure investments, like the Roads of National Significance, the electrification of Auckland’s commuter rail network, Ultra-Fast Broadband, and the Waterview Tunnel. We know how vital quality infrastructure is to the economy and people’s lives.
“PPPs are very effective at getting quality long-lasting infrastructure built more quickly and using private capital to stretch the country’s capital budget so we get more built. The National Infrastructure Commission will be responsible for expanding the number of PPPs so we can grow our $32.5 billion investment and have more new hospitals, schools and transport projects sooner.
“Construction companies need clear visibility of the full pipeline so they can invest in innovation and skills to gear up and meet the challenge. As well as the $32.5 billion to be invested over the next four years, we need to plan further spending in the order of another $40 billion over the following four years.
“We already have about $2 billion of PPP projects included within our $32.5 billion capital investment, including the Transmission Gully and Puhoi to Warkworth roading developments, and a number of school building projects. The new Commission will be charged with ramping the number of projects up significantly so we can extend the $32.5 billion further.