Transport Infrastructure Investment
Funding Future Infrastructure Needs
Objective
The study examines principles for determining the most appropriate models for investment in surface transport infrastructure. The primary focus is on network-based infrastructure - roads, rail and, to a lesser extent, inland waterways. The focus is on innovative, off-budget funding mechanisms for infrastructure projects, network development and maintenance. The purpose is to examine the elements that should be considered by governments in choosing the appropriate models for the provision of surface transport infrastructure. This includes maintenance of old and investment in new capacity, as well as questions of financing.
Outline
All governments are faced with the challenge of maintaining surface transport infrastructure networks and adding new capacity in strategic areas. This requires very large expenditures. To meet this demand, governments are increasingly looking to a wide range of alternative models characterised by increasing use of private sector resources, expertise or management. Options include the selective contracting out of specific tasks; public-private partnerships (PPPs); fully or partially state-owned companies; private, not-for-profit entities; and outright privatisation.

This study examines the overall challenge of providing surface transport infrastructure, including a description of the available models. It provides an overview of the current situation observed around the world. It discusses the fundamental question of how borrowing for the creation of surface transport infrastructure should be treated in public accounts. The study considers the potential efficiency gains provided by the models, and fundamental conditions that must be in place to achieve these, as well as inherent and potential costs, including the question of risk transfer. The study also examines the extent to which users should be expected to pay for infrastructure, and the potential impacts of this on efficiency. Finally, it looks at key questions related to the design of PPPs, particularly their legal and regulatory frameworks and procurement processes. The study also provides a series of case studies intended to highlight points raised in the report, and to reveal the complexity of applying principles to real-life infrastructure investment situations.
Participating Countries
Australia, Austria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States.
Time Schedule
The working group was launched in 2006. The final report was published in February 2008.

For more information, please contact: Jari KAUPPILA
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