Tony Abbott's big plans at odds with Australia's infrastructure history

22 Apr 2014

Last week Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced that Sydney would get a second airport at Badgerys Creek. It's estimated that the new airport will cost somewhere around $2.5 billion, the majority of which is to come from the private sector.

Mr Abbott wants to be known as the infrastructure prime minister and has made it very clear he thinks Australian cities lack the infrastructure necessary for the economy to expand.

The Abbott government believes that the private sector should be a major player in any new infrastructure and is encouraging the states to sell off or recycle their old infrastructure in order to free up capital.

Historically, though, neither the private sector nor the federal government have been involved in the provision of infrastructure in Australia. In the period before World War II, the vast majority was provided by state governments. 

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Image: Sydney Harbour Bridge / Shutterstock 

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