President’s column

A few months ago, I informed you about a proposed joint infrastructure statement between ALGA and other peak bodies to publicly advocate for continued Commonwealth funding into infrastructure. Today, I’m pleased to tell you that this statement was finalised and launched yesterday with a strong call to all political parties to make a commitment to maintaining long-term infrastructure spending, address the growing infrastructure shortfall and improve national productivity.

The signatories of the joint statement included ALGA, Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia, Planning Institute of Australia, Australian Logistics Council, Urban Development Institute of Australia, Property Council of Australia, National Farmer's Federation and Green Building Council of Australia.

This initiative leverages all of our shared interests for better infrastructure and provides a powerful voice in our calls for greater investment in public infrastructure. Such a partnership is also important in the lead up to this year’s Federal election providing a concise and succinct call to all Federal political parties and their candidates to take a long-term, strategic view of infrastructure investment to ensure Australia's cities and regions remain competitive, liveable and sustainable.

We know that the key to improving living standards is the maintenance of economic growth through improved national productivity. However, years of under-investment in public infrastructure, and transport infrastructure in particular, has resulted in transport networks that are no longer fit for purpose. This under-investment has also affected Australia’s freight routes, including local roads, which has constrained growth and productivity now and will continue to do so in the future unless there is a change.

The joint statement contains a 9-point Infrastructure Plan, which outlines critical areas of focus for the government to support transport infrastructure to achieve productivity, growth and economic prosperity.

The joint statement will be sent to all political parties and Federal MP seeking their explicit commitment to the Plan and its nine points.

A panel session will be held at this year’s National General Assembly to go through the 9-point Infrastructure Plan and discuss the joint infrastructure statement in more detail, including the impacts of the infrastructure shortfall on the diverse areas of Australia’s economy represented by the range of organisations signed on to the statement. I welcome you to be part of this discussion and encourage you to register your attendance to the NGA at this link.

Mayor Troy Pickard

 ALGA President