Public Infrastructure Financing - An International Perspective

Productivity Commission Staff Working Paper, March 2009

302 Pages Posted: 5 Mar 2010

See all articles by Chris Chan

Chris Chan

Productivity Commission

Danny Forwood

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Heather Roper

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Chris Sayers

Government of Australia

Date Written: March 31, 2009

Abstract

Historically, governments have played the predominant role in owning and operating infrastructure facilities such as schools, hospitals, roads, bridges, railways, ports, telecommunications networks, and water and electricity supply facilities. However, fiscal policy constraints, growing acceptance of the user-pays principle, and a recognition that there are generally greater incentives for efficiency in the private sector, have driven increased private involvement in the provision of both economic and social infrastructure.

A new Commission Staff Working Paper reports on the experiences of a number of countries using different approaches to funding public infrastructure projects. The countries covered in the study are Australia, Canada, France, Germany, New Zealand, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. In most countries, general government investment in infrastructure has declined in recent years. Nevertheless, overall investment in infrastructure has remained fairly steady, although volatile in some countries. Total Australian investment in infrastructure was just below 6 per cent of GDP in 2006-07. Sub-national governments undertook 76 per cent of public infrastructure investment, with government trading enterprises (GTEs) accounting for around half of this.

Keywords: infrastructure, finance

JEL Classification: E6, H4, H54

Suggested Citation

Chan, Chris and Forwood, Danny and Roper, Heather and Sayers, Chris, Public Infrastructure Financing - An International Perspective (March 31, 2009). Productivity Commission Staff Working Paper, March 2009, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1565073

Chris Chan (Contact Author)

Productivity Commission ( email )

Level 28
35 Collins St.
Melbourne, Victoria, Victoria 3000
Australia

Danny Forwood

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Heather Roper

affiliation not provided to SSRN

No Address Available

Chris Sayers

Government of Australia ( email )

Level 28, 35 Collins St.
Melbourne, Victoria, 3000
Australia

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