The Albanese Government has introduced the Infrastructure Australia Amendment (Independent Review) Bill 2023 into Parliament today to implement reforms that will restore Infrastructure Australia as the Commonwealth’s premier adviser on major infrastructure investment.
The legislation is part of the Albanese Government’s response to the recommendations of the Independent Review of Infrastructure Australia. The review was undertaken in 2022 and was a significant election commitment.
The changes are an important step in restoring IA to its rightful place as the Commonwealth Government’s independent infrastructure adviser.
This is another step in repairing the damage done to IA under the Liberals and Nationals which impaired the organisation’s effectiveness, sidelined its advice and stacked the board with their mates.
The Albanese Government will position Infrastructure Australia to achieve its core purpose in providing quality independent advice to the Australian Government on infrastructure that supports the economy, builds the nation and addresses the challenges and opportunities of the future.
A number of the Review’s major recommendations will be implemented through legislative change, with the remainder to be largely implemented through a revised Statement of Expectations.
The Bill defines IA’s mandate, refines the product suite to better support government investment objects, allows a well targeted Infrastructure Priority List and improves evaluation functions.
It also puts in place a new governance structure made up of three expert commissioners in place of the existing board. The Commissioners will be supported by an advisory council.
The changes will provide IA with a clear purpose, streamlined functions that align with the Australian Government’s strategic infrastructure priorities.
Making good decisions is critical to making sure no one is held back and no one is left behind.
It is critical to productivity, to economic growth and opportunity and to ensure the best investments at a time when the budget is in need of repair.
A Labor Government set up Infrastructure Australia and only a Labor Government will ensure it is once more a respected and trusted institution.