Australian Infrastructure
Investment Report

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Infrastructure Partnerships Australia and Allens have partnered to jointly present the 2022 Australian Infrastructure Investment Report.

This year’s report captures the views of international and Australian investors who together collectively own or manage over A$680 billion of infrastructure assets across the globe.

Our report, in collaboration with Allens, provides a comprehensive view of investor appetite and sentiment and reveals insights into the drivers and challenges for infrastructure investors.

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Executive Message

The 2022 Australian Infrastructure Investment Report marks the seventh edition of this research and remains the most comprehensive sector-wide analysis of the trends, issues and opportunities facing current and prospective investors in Australian infrastructure. With the previous edition undertaken in the first half of 2021, this report provides an important analysis of the current status of Australia’s infrastructure market as the world emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Australia remains an attractive destination for investment underpinned, by a strong reputation. The Australian infrastructure market continues to be underpinned by its strong reputation for delivering infrastructure projects, with 88 per cent of participants ‘highly likely’ to invest in Australia in the next two to three years. The attractiveness of the Australian infrastructure market is primarily driven by our track record for delivering infrastructure and sophistication of market participants and partners.

Australia’s performance in ESG is varied. ESG credentials of investments continue to be a key driver for investors, and Australia has an opportunity to catch up to more sophisticated ESG markets overseas. While 58 per cent of participants agree the country performs well in the ‘Governance’ element of ESG and 46 per cent say Australia is above average in the ‘Social’ element, just 32 per cent say the same of the ‘Environmental’ element, with 10 per cent identifying it as one of the worst markets globally. However, as ESG becomes a central driver, Australia’s investors are stepping up to the task for a range of reasons, including reputational risk, desire to drive positive change and client expectations.

Investors are keen to drive decarbonisation efforts but need policy certainty. Australia’s progress in the energy transition has been marred by a historical lack of political and regulatory certainty to drive decarbonisation of the infrastructure sector, with Australia viewed as a laggard on the international level. However, strong leadership from state and territory governments – and the private sector – has the infrastructure sector taking clear strides in decarbonisation. Investor appetite for ‘green’ infrastructure is continuing to reach record levels, with a strong attraction to renewable generation, and transmission and distribution infrastructure. There is a sense of optimism that the ‘climate wars’ are now in the rear-view mirror.

Supply chain constraints and inflationary economic conditions are challenging investors. While the Australian infrastructure market’s stability and track record for infrastructure delivery continues to bring investors to our shores, supply chain constraints, particularly in the labour and materials market, and growing uncertainty around the global economic outlook, are challenging investors.

In order to ride out a potential coming economic ‘storm’ we need to ensure we have the right settings to attract and preserve private capital. With the current record project pipeline across Australia – including an increasing number of megaprojects entering their delivery phases – the infrastructure sector will need to balance an expanding infrastructure pipeline with delivery timeframes and the sector’s capacity.

Private capital is hungry for a home and Australia must continually calibrate market settings to attract that capital. Australia remains an attractive destination for infrastructure investments, however, we risk losing our advantage if we continue with business as usual. Australia has slipped behind North America as the most attractive investment destination globally. With growing uncertainty around the effects of inflation and geopolitical issues, we risk missing out to other regions.

There is a wall of private capital hungry for a home. With the growing scale of domestic superannuation savings, Australia needs to ensure the policy and regulatory settings encourage private finance in the sector. The 2021 Your Future, Your Super reform package has generated a series of improvements, alongside some unintended consequences. Views of the materiality of these challenges vary widely amongst investors – ranging from welcome to extremely damaging. However, on average, views are neutral with a preference for evolution of the measures. With a periodic review of the reform package in the near term, there is a platform available to make positive changes.

With record infrastructure spends announced over the past few years, governments are entering a post-pandemic era where battered balance sheets and rising borrowing costs means sustaining investor appetite will require different approaches to infrastructure investments. Infrastructure Partnerships Australia has identified 67 greenfield projects across the country – representing $72.3 billion worth of opportunity – suitable for governments to engage private capital on. While these are greenfield projects today, they will be brownfield opportunities ‘tomorrow’ that investors or governments may look to recycle down the track.

Fortunately, Australia has a deep history of leveraging private capital to release funding from existing infrastructure by recycling assets, and for new infrastructure through models like Public Private Partnerships (PPPs). This year’s report shows Australia needs to re-learn some old skills and unlock the vast sums of private capital available to meet our infrastructure aspirations.

Adrian Dwyer
Chief Executive Officer | Infrastructure Partnerships Australia

David Donnelly
Partner | Allen

Kip Fitzsimon
Partner | Allens

Read more


Investor appetite for Australian infrastructure remains strong

The Australian infrastructure market continues to be underpinned by its maturity and strong reputation for delivering infrastructure projects.

Survey participants indicated the same factors that have made Australia an attractive investment destination largely remain in place. Australia’s track record for infrastructure, knowledge of market participants and economic stability, have remained the most important factors for all seven editions of the Australian Infrastructure Investment Report – but all ratings fell compared to last year.

This year’s survey identified that ‘value to be found’ and the ‘cost of equity’ showed a marked increase from last year.


What makes Australia attractive for infrastructure investment?


Capacity constraints and economic uncertainty are dampening investor confidence

Supply chain constraints, particularly in the labour and materials market, and growing uncertainty around the global economic outlook, are challenging investors.

For the first time since 2019, economic stability, has decreased, likely as a result of the current global economic outlook and inflationary environment.

85 per cent of participants agreed the Australian market is facing capacity constraints. Participants identified three core factors contributing to the challenge – the ability to access talent, the availability of construction partners and the challenge of managing labour costs.

Most significant challenges to investing in Australian infrastructure


ESG considerations of investments have grown over the past year

ESG considerations remain at the forefront of investors’ mindsets compared to previous years where they were relegated as secondary drivers of investment.

Participants noted that the ESG credentials of investments have become more important to their investment decision-making over the past year. Diversity in organisations and among leadership groups as well as maintaining a social licence for projects have increased in importance for investors.

Climate risk has evolved into a pressing issue for investors – a clear indication that nearly three years of extreme climate events have made investors weary.

Factors that are more important to investors compared to last year


Australia’s performance in ESG is varied

In terms of Australia’s performance in ESG elements, more than half of participants believed that Australia is ‘one of the better markets’ or a ‘leader’ in ‘Governance.’

Investors identified that Australia also performs well in the ‘Social’ element of ESG, especially when considering the social licence of infrastructure assets.

The ‘Environmental’ element is considered as Australia’s weakest ESG component. However, participants highlighted that it is regarded as the most important component to organisations – potentially to the detriment of the other two elements.

Reputational risk is the key driver underpinning the move to ESG, followed by desire to drive positive change. Investor/client expectations and compliance with corporate targets or commitments are other significant ESG investment drivers.

Australia’s performance in ESG elements


Key drivers of the shift to ESG investments


Decarbonisation is a primary consideration for investors

Decarbonisation was a key theme this year, with investors signalling a strong appetite to drive decarbonisation goals through their investments, and work with industry to deliver Australia’s emissions reduction targets.

Most participants said that they would like to see Australian governments do more to push decarbonisation efforts, even if it incurs additional costs.

Across all energy assets, there was a clear preference for renewable energy generation and transmission, as well as emerging technologies such as hydrogen.

Renewable generation has retained its position as the second most attractive asset class. Conversely, non-renewable generation suffered the largest fall in attractiveness and is now the least preferred class.

There is an overwhelming amount of private capital continuing to hunt for renewable energy assets. Participants identified opportunities for governments to utilise private capital in decarbonisation efforts, with investors noting the appeal of decarbonised assets and their substantial opportunity for revenue.

Preferred Australian asset types to invest in


Investors’ appetite for government action towards decarbonisation, regardless of additional costs


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please contact


Chief Executive Officer
Infrastructure Partnerships Australia
[email protected]


Director, Policy & Research
Infrastructure Partnerships Australia
[email protected]


Senior Policy Adviser
Infrastructure Partnerships Australia
[email protected]


Policy Adviser
Infrastructure Partnerships Australia
[email protected]