PDF: 1917 KB - Infrastructure Australia

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PDF: 1917 KB - Infrastructure Australia

InfrastructureAustralia2.4 Better use of existing infrastructureThe interests of national productivityand competitiveness must prevail. Whereaccess regimes on critical infrastructureare not working, reform is needed. Suchreform can be painful and adversarial, butembarking upon massive new investmentsor unnecessarily duplicating infrastructureis far more costly.Several submissions were put toInfrastructure Australia regardinginvestment in intermodal (road-rail)terminals. A variety of circumstancescan arise with these terminals. For example,in some metropolitan areas there is a lackof suitable land for terminal developmentand use. Proposed or existing links toports from some terminals can makethese facilities very important to interstateand metropolitan freight tasks and provideowners with strategic advantages.In regional locations where more landis available, the principal issues maybe attracting sufficient trade or fundsto make the terminal viable. There canalso be competition between someterminals, including terminals locatedin adjacent regions, and private partiesmay have already invested substantialsums into terminals.b) Efficient PricingPricing reforms that reflect the real totalcosts of providing infrastructure arean important means of ensuring thatinfrastructure is used efficiently.‘Efficient pricing’ refers to the pricingthat corresponds to the efficientallocation of resources. One benefit ofefficient pricing is that it helps potentialinvestors – whether they are taxpayersrepresented by government or privatefirms – to determine the real value thatsociety places on a particular infrastructureservice. Where such prices are distorted– for example, through subsidies or thepresence of externalities – it is difficult toidentify what society genuinely wants andthese needs can go unmet, generating adisadvantage for all.Efficient pricing also helps to ensure thatinfrastructure is used for its most productivepurpose and that capacity is beingallocated to maximise output.30 | Infrastructure Australia – Advising Government on Australia’s Infrastructure

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