Champagne: P3s have demonstrated success

Exclusive: Canada’s new infrastructure minister tells P3 Bulletin of ‘continued role’ for P3s; model is ‘building block’ in development of Infra Bank

François-Philippe Champagne was appointed to the role in August, following a reshuffle of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government that saw Amarjeet Sohi take up the role of Minister of Natural Resources.

“Public investment alone cannot meet the sizeable infrastructure need that exists without placing an unsustainable burden on taxpayers,” said Champagne.

He added that the Canadian government’s approach to P3s “has demonstrated success and there will continue to be a role for P3s in Canadian infrastructure delivery”, pointing to the Champlain Bridge and Gordie Howe International Crossing as examples of the model’s success.

Champagne suggested that the new Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) would build on that success. “There is enormous potential to be tapped into through Canadian and global investors; by banding our investments together, we can achieve the most in long-term infrastructure projects,” he said.

“The CIB is intended to help facilitate a new partnership model that brings together the public and private sectors to build infrastructure projects together, and to share in the risks and rewards of those projects.

“The P3 model was an important building block in the formation of the CIB. The Bank is taking elements of the P3 model further by using revenue and user charges to fund the asset, in whole or in part, and transfer more revenue, usage and ownership risks to the private sector, which allows for equity to be shared with the private sector for a risk adjusted return.”

The full interview with Minister Champagne will be published in Issue 6 of P3 Bulletin later this year