Richard Threlfall, KPMG’s Head of Infrastructure, Building and Construction comments on the findings of the Independent Armitt Review of Infrastructure, published today:
“If implemented the Armitt Commission proposals will provide a sound basis for the long-term planning of the UK’s infrastructure.
“The proposed National Infrastructure Commission paves the way for a dispassionate and evidence-based assessment of the UK’s infrastructure need, and a blueprint for future infrastructure development. Only with the clarity of a long-term infrastructure plan will we unlock the more than £40bn per annum of public and private money the UK needs to invest in its infrastructure to remain competitive in the global economy.
“The proposed Commission would also balance long term infrastructure planning in an independent body and democratic accountability through periodic reporting to Parliament. Those who have sought to argue that long-term planning conflicts with democracy should note the successful models in Australia, Singapore and Canada on which the report draws.
“A National Infrastructure Commission is of course only part of the answer to the UK’s infrastructure challenge. Alongside we need a more generous compensation regime for those directly affected by new roads, airports, power stations and waste facilities, and a wholesale reform of how Government evaluates the costs and benefits of schemes, so that we prioritise the projects that create the most jobs and boost the UK’s competitiveness.”
Alan Buckle, Partner at KPMG and member of the Armitt Commission advisory panel comments: “The report focuses attention on the urgent need to overhaul our approach to investment in our transport, energy, water and telecoms networks. Too many investment decisions have been put off in recent years, so that today we are, for example, on the edge of a crisis in terms of energy generating capacity. Modern infrastructure is essential to the UK’s future prosperity and the proposed National Infrastructure Commission offers a long-term and accountable approach to infrastructure planning.”
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