Mrdak gets the nod to join infrastructure group

Top-level transport bureaucrat joins other big names on a new working group to advise Infrastructure Australia and government

June 22, 2011

Australia’s top transport bureaucrat will join other big names on the new Infrastructure Finance Working Group established to advise Infrastructure Australia and government.

Department of Infrastructure and Transport Secretary Mike Mrdak has been appointed to the working group, along with Federal Treasury director Jim Murphy, ANZ’s David Byrne, Julian Vella from KPMG and Prime Minister and Cabinet Acting Deputy Secretary Paul Schreier.

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Anthony Albanese has also appointed Alinta Energy CEO Ross Rolfe, Stephen Williams from the Royal Bank of Scotland, Infrastructure Partnerships Australia CEO Brendan Lyon and Pauline Vamos, the CEO of the Association of Super Funds of Australia.

Murphy, whose career includes a stint with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), will chair the working group, with Rolfe acting as his deputy.

Prior to joining Alinta, Rolfe worked in the Queensland public service in the departments of Premier and Cabinet, State Development and Environment and Heritage. He also held the post of coordinator general in the state for six years.

Albanese says the group will advise Infrastructure Australia and government on the implementation of infrastructure measures outlined in the Federal Budget and to identify projects that would benefit from private investment.

The working group will also examine user charges and alternative financing models and opportunities for financing reform.

Albanese has also asked the group to look at reforms to public-private partnership practices in a bid to lower costs and streamline the process, the tradeable bond market and expanding the pipeline of potential infrastructure projects.

The group's establishment is part of new measures outlined in the Federal Budget to expand Infrastructure Australia's role.

Funding will increase by almost 40 percent to $36 million over four years and Infrastructure Australia will be taskd with producing an enhanced list of priority projects.

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