Australia to launch Pacific infra fund

Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced two initiatives to invest in infrastructure in the Pacific region.

An Australian Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP) is to be established to support infrastructure development in Pacific countries and Timor Leste.

This A$2bn initiative will use grant funding combined with long-term loans to support high priority infrastructure development. 

Morrison said it will “enable these projects to leverage broader support.

“It will invest in essential infrastructure such as telecommunications, energy, transport, water and will stretch our aid dollars even further.”

The government is also to ask Parliament to give Efic, Australia’s export financing agency, an extra A$1bn in callable capital and a new more flexible infrastructure financing power to support investments in the region which have broad national benefit for Australia.

“It’s in our interest that’s why we need to do it,” he said.

“Private capital, entrepreneurialism, open markets are crucial to our mutual prosperity.”

Morrison commented that the Pacific region is estimated to need US$3.1bn in investment per year to 2030.

In July Australia, Japan, and the US, announced a partnership to invest in infrastructure in the Indo-Pacific region.