Why Sydney’s global infrastructure hub should be wary of PPPs

While in Davos representing Australia at the World Economic Forum, Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has enthusiastically extolled the virtues of the Global Infrastructure Hub as a way of funding an infrastructure shortfall, particularly in developed nations. Frydenberg told the ABC: “There is a great deal of interest here at Davos in what Australia is doing because essentially this infrastructure hub is a knowledge sharing platform. It is about sharing best practice across the funding of infrastructure, the construction of infrastructure and the prioritising of infrastructure. It is estimated there is a $50 trillion deficit in infrastructure over the next decade and Australia had a real strength in this area. In Brisbane last November, G20 countries endorsed the idea of the establishing the hub and agreed to establish it in Sydney to harness perceived Australian expertise, especially in Public Private Partnerships (PPPs). I am not ideologically for or against PPPs and can see the case for them every time I visit a developing country to give governance advice and walk through a brand new terminal that cannot be the most important priority for limited government capital in poor cash-strapped states. But I am arithmetically opposed to PPPs which do not add up, cautious about self-interested spruiking, almost as leary of private monopolies as Adam Smith and concerned about the governance issues associated with PPPs.” (Source : http://theconversation.com/why-sydneys-global-infrastructure-hub-should-be-wary-of-ppps-34600)