Home' Future Building: The Australian Infrastructure Review : Volume 8 Number 1 Contents futurebuilding 31
an opportunity for businesses to involve themselves in the
regulatory reform process currently underway.
City building continues to be the focus following the mining
boom. Health expenditure is a key driver here, as annual
healthcare expenditure is expected to double as a portion of
GDP by 2060, with aged care expenditure expected to triple.
Education investment is also critical to support the growing
population, alongside housing. This presents a real opportunity
to combine different types of infrastructure. In transport, we
are seeing projects being combined with commercial and
residential developments, and health precincts. In this type of
environment, there is an increased role for planning in order to
get each of the different infrastructure opportunities right.
Millennials will make up 75 per cent of the population by 2025,
and will earn and spend $2 out of every $3. The trends that we
are seeing in their spending patterns will drive infrastructure
investment. Millennials are much more focused on renewable
and green generation, and are willing to pay more for it. They
support increased public transport, and increasingly see transport
as a service. Millennials are also happier to rent, as opposed
to owning property. More importantly, the use of digital and
technology applications has increased dramatically. In terms of
infrastructure, this means that there needs to be more emphasis
placed on technology-enabled service provisions as part of our
infrastructure spend over the medium term.
Opportunities for businesses to become involved in
the reform process
The fourth and final theme is the relationship between business
and government. Currently, we have some states facing big
budget constraints, while others have ambitious infrastructure
targets, such as those in New South Wales and Victoria. As
reform and regulatory changes occur – as is happening in the
energy market now – there is an increased need and opportunity
for businesses to engage with government. As a sector, we should
encourage partnerships where business is able to be involved in
the regulatory process, participate in reviews, and provide ideas
and solutions to government.
Businesses should be more engaged with the stakeholder
side, as well. Businesses have a role in publicly advocating for
projects, but also more broadly for reform. Unsolicited proposals
are a key part of this, and they are becoming increasingly common.
The key message resonating from this theme is that businesses
should continue to engage with government and the public sphere
in relation to infrastructure to initiate reform and to support much-
needed infrastructure projects.
John Pickhaver – Co-Head, Australia and New Zealand, Macquarie Capital
John Pickhaver is the Co-Head of Macquarie Capital for Australia and New Zealand, and has 17 years of experience in the finance and infrastructure sectors,
both as a civil engineer and in infrastructure finance.
While at Macquarie, Mr Pickhaver has advised on corporate and project financings, mergers and acquisitions, and arranging debt and equity for a variety of
transactions. Mr Pickhaver has also provided strategic financial advice to corporates in relation to capital structure reviews, and to governments in relation to
projects, assets and financing.
Previously, Mr Pickhaver worked for a number of years as a civil engineer in Australia on infrastructure projects, before completing his doctorate at Oxford
University in civil engineering, and subsequently his Master of Applied Finance.
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