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Future Freight Networks : Yearbook 2018
105 FUTURE FREIGHT NETWORKS 2018 newly elected governments cancelling contracts for projects that have already been approved. There was reference made to both the East West Link and the West Gate Tunnel in Victoria, but it was noted that the risk applies in almost all jurisdictions, as political parties seek to make individual projects a point of difference with their electoral competitors. All panellists agreed that this situation is counterproductive and discouraging investment in infrastructure projects. There was also some discussion about the impact of the populist/nationalist strain that has come into the present political climate. Those attracted to that sort of message have an inherent suspicion of private sector involvement in infrastructure such as ports, roads and airports. This makes fostering bipartisan support for private investment and private sector involvement in key freight infrastructure all the more difficult. The discussion among panellists and Forum attendees also drew out the point that there is no shortage of capital available for investment – the challenge is identifying projects that will produce a revenue stream. The problem can be traced back to the lack of available data, as beyond ports and airports, it is hard to find good available data upon which to build the sort of robust business case needed to attract investment. This is an issue that the National Freight and Supply Chain strategy needs to try to resolve. Stephen Land, Nik Kemp and Brendan Lyon There is no shortage of capital available for investment – the challenge is identifying projects that will produce a revenue stream