Insights from the Infrastructure Investors Forum Australia

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Technology is disrupting how infrastructure assets will be used in the future.

Richard Fechner, GHD Advisory Global Leader – Infrastructure, Investment & Economics, was one of the panellists invited to speak on this topic at the Infrastructure Investors Forum Australia 2017 in Sydney.

“Investors are considering how new technologies will change the demand for assets,” Richard says. “One of the issues we discussed is the arrival of driverless cars and how they may provide ‘mobility as a service’. In this scenario, even though fewer people will own cars outright, we could actually expect greater use of toll roads.”

According to Richard, some of the other key insights from the event were:

  • Few major privatisation deals coming up is driving interest in infrastructure owned by corporates.
  • Investors are considering riskier options, such as greenfield projects, because of high competition for ‘core’ infrastructure.
  • There is a need for more focus on improving returns from assets investors already own.
  • Asset recycling programs in Australia and the UK show increasing trend of governments building and ‘de-risking’ the assets for later private investment.
  • To sustain the governments’ willingness to privatise assets, the Infrastructure industry needs to better explain how communities benefit from private ownership.
  • Policy unpredictability is making energy sector investments more uncertain. However, advances in energy storage like Snowy 2.0 will transform the potential of renewable energy assets.

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