Civil Contractors New Zealand welcomes a Government proposal to create Te Waihanga – The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission as the new Autonomous Crown Entity to deliver long term strategy and coordination of infrastructure planning.
CCNZ Chief Executive Peter Silcock congratulated the Government on the proposed structure, which acknowledged the need to lift the quality of the procurement process and set a unified long-term strategy for New Zealand’s infrastructure.
The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission’s key role of providing impartial, expert advice to inform infrastructure decision-making would be essential in tackling the country’s infrastructure deficit and providing better information about planned work, Mr Silcock said.
“Having an independent body is likely to result in a stronger, better planned and more consistent pipeline of infrastructure work. This will enable contractors to better utilise resources, encouraging greater investment in our people, new technology and productivity.”
He said similar infrastructure commissions had been put in place in countries such as Australia and the UK with successful results, and better long-term planning would also help overcome skills shortfalls by creating more consistent workflow.
The Commission’s roles supporting procurement and delivery, setting best practice in the procurement process and providing a ‘shop front’ for projects would give better value for money for construction projects, businesses and workers, Mr Silcock said.
“We are delighted that the Government has seen the need for an independent body to set the way forward. An independent infrastructure commission will go a long way to reducing the impact of political swings and divisive debates that have stood in the way of progress.”
He said now feedback from the submissions process had been recognised, it was critical to ensure competent people were appointed to the Commission to ensure it was up to the job.
CCNZ’s submission on the New Zealand Infrastructure Commission is available here.