Infrastructure hub: smooths the lumps but no silver bullet

The new international organisation launched at the G20 won’t solve the world’s infrastructure problems, but it should make a positive difference, experts tell The Mandarin.

The creation of a Sydney-based Global Infrastructure Hub announced at the G20 meeting on the weekend is being greeted with cautious optimism by infrastructure experts.

The hub will act as a clearing house for public infrastructure projects and assist in “developing a knowledge-sharing network to aggregate and share information on infrastructure projects and financing between governments, international organisations, development banks, national infrastructure institutions and the private sector”, according to the document agreed at the G20.

It’s estimated it will cost US$10-15 million a year once established. Most of that funding will come from Australia and other G20 states, but it is expected the private sector will contribute some funds. Importantly, it will be open to all countries inside and outside the G20, and will be free to engage.

The organisation will have a four-year mandate to deliver on objectives, and will be reviewed after three years to assess its effectiveness.

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