Asian investors and Australian infrastructure: Video

A confluence of trends will see Asian investors take an expanding role in Australia’s efforts to address its future infrastructure needs, supporting more innovative and customer-centric approaches to infrastructure that meet investors’ financial, sustainability and business development goals.

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Like many other prosperous and fast-growing nations, Australia is increasingly facing infrastructure constraints, largely due to its rapidly growing, but ageing, population. Australia’s population growth is about three times that of China.

There are multiple pressure points where additional capacity and more customer-focused infrastructure are needed, including urban transport networks, water, energy and telecommunications. To address these gaps, Australia needs to do a better job not only of managing its current stock of infrastructure, but also planning for the years to come.

Asian investors are well-positioned to play a critical role in the process.Investors from Asia have a long history of involvement in Australian infrastructure assets. And we believe there are multiple factors that are poised to drive a closer Asia-Australia infrastructure partnership.

The region is increasingly integrated through various trade and investment pacts that rely on infrastructure such as rail and ports. And Australia is viewed as a stable, open, and investor friendly country, all these things give Asian investors confidence to invest.

And of course there is a substantial pipeline of projects. The Asia-Australia infrastructure partnership will be led by investors and will be customer-centric. The new approach will enable Australia to develop infrastructure as a service, not only a physical asset. It will not only meet investors’ goals, but also ultimately benefit end-customers and communities at large.

We also see a fast-developing ecosystem of Australia’s infrastructure sector. It consists of businesses that build infrastructure, the people that deliver the services, domestic and Asian investors that invest in the projects, and the actual end-users. So the role of Australian banks goes beyond just financing infrastructure projects. We are critical in bringing together many players in the sector to collaborate and search for better outcomes.

At National Australia Bank, we have a role to play in championing the system-thinking and customer-centric approach to infrastructure development and funding, supporting an emerging, proactive customer voice, and contributing in the process to beneficial outcomes for all.

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