Thursday, February 29, 2024

Infrastructure Australia review leads named

The Federal Government has today announced the appointment of Nicole Lockwood and Mike Mrdak AO to lead an independent review of Infrastructure Australia.

The review will consider Infrastructure Australia’s role as an independent adviser to the Commonwealth on nationally significant infrastructure priorities and advise on what changes may be needed to IA’s focus, priorities and, if necessary, legislation.

Ms Lockwood is the Chair of Infrastructure Western Australia, a member of the Boards of the Green Building Council of Australia, the WA Association for Mental Health, and is also a non-executive Director of NBN Co. 

Mr Mrdak is President and CEO for Australia and New Zealand of NEC. He is a previous Secretary of the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development, and of the Department of Communications and the Arts.

Mike Mrdak.

Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, Catherine King said the review was an important first step in restoring Infrastructure Australia to its rightful place as an expert advisory body of national significance.

She said the Government looked forward to a revitalised IA helping the Commonwealth deliver a better future for all Australians through its infrastructure policy and investment decisions.

“Infrastructure Australia was created to provide expert advice to government regarding infrastructure priorities across the nation,” said Minister King.

“In recent years, the organisation has been allowed to drift with partisan board appointments and a lack of clear direction. It’s clear a review has been necessary and that’s why Labor committed to one before the election,” she said.

“In Nicole Lockwood and Mike Mrdak, we have two of Australia’s pre-eminent infrastructure experts who will conduct a thorough and independent review of Infrastructure Australia and make recommendations to get it back on track.

“Our nation has big challenges ahead, whether that be in dealing with population growth, managing skills shortages, decarbonising the transport and infrastructure sector or dealing with the uptake of electric vehicles.”

She said the review and the changes it proposes would be essential in ensuring that the Australian Government “receives the expert and non-partisan advice it needs to build a better future”.

“I thank the board members, some of whom have agreed to step down, for their understanding and contribution as the Government reviews and refreshes Infrastructure Australia,” said Ms King.

A draft report is expected within three months, and a final report shortly thereafter.

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