Forecast infrastructure investment serious cause for concern

30 Jul 2018 4:40 PM | Anonymous

MEDIA RELEASE 

“The National Construction Pipeline report issued today by MBIE shows infrastructure investment projections down dramatically on those of 2017, highlighting the problem of uncertainty in the infrastructure sector and raising serious questions about New Zealand’s ability to service new housing,” says Stephen Selwood CEO of infrastructure New Zealand.




“BRANZ research shows last year's spending was down 9% on the 2017 projections. While their research indicates an increase in capital intentions in the near term, they also show a subsequent drop-off from the beginning of 2021. Putting the initial bump aside, overall infrastructure capital expenditure is forecast to flatline over the next five years.

“The Capital Goods Price Index (CGPI) has been rising at 3 per cent over the past decade, suggesting there could be even less investment in infrastructure in the early 2020s than there is today – and we already know that we’re well short of where we need to be.

“Auckland, a city buckling under the pressure of growth compounded by decades of infrastructure underinvestment, will, even with major Government investments announced to date, fall in real terms over the next five years.

“BRANZ projections show that construction activity is projected to fall everywhere outside of Auckland over the next couple of years.

“We will not be able to address homelessness and meet growth with less infrastructure investment. Homes need pipes, roads and cables and new approaches to infrastructure investment need to be implemented.


“This is a very timely report and provides a clear signal to Government that it needs to move up a gear with urgency.

“There are projects in the pipeline sitting there waiting for signoff, including Mill Rd, Penlink and the East West Link in Auckland as well as components of Let’s Get Wellington Moving and major upgrades to the SH2 corridor north of Tauranga among other state highway projects nationwide.

“These projects are needed for homes, tourism and regional economic development.

“If the government chooses not to fund these and other projects itself, it needs to allow private capital to be deployed to accelerate investment in transport, water and social infrastructure to support housing and growth,” Selwood says.

A copy of the National Construction Pipeline can be found here: http://www.mbie.govt.nz/publications-research/research/construction-sector-productivity/national-construction-pipeline-report-2018.pdf

ENDS

For further information and comment contact Stephen Selwood on 021 791 209


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