Australian groups pledge to invest £28.5bn in UK over next decade

Australian investors have pledged to spend £ 28.5 billion across the UK on clean energy, technology and infrastructure projects over the next decade, the UK government said on Wednesday.

Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, has met with leading businesses in Australia, including the financial services company Macquarie Group and the Infrastructure Fund IFM Investors, to encourage further investment in the UK to help stimulate economic recovery with the cessation of the plague.

£ 28.5 billion is made up of a combination of new and previously announced commitments.

Commenting on a number of wind farms, property developments and new green infrastructure that the companies claim they wanted to invest in, Johnson said: “This is the global UK in action – building new partnerships with friends and allies around the world to create prosperity at home.”

Australian pension funds have been active investors in the UK for decades in major asset and infrastructure projects, including the redevelopment of King’s Cross in London, as well as water, gas and telecom.

However, on Wednesday IFM Investors urged the government to do more to attract more foreign capital to the UK.

David Neil, IFM CEO, has pledged to invest £ 3 billion over the next five years in new zero-zero projects and upgrade IFM’s existing UK assets, including the M6 ​​toll road and Manchester, Stansted and East Midlands airports.

But he said IFM and foreign pension funds would be willing to do more if the UK government took a bigger share of the risks in developing infrastructure projects and handed over more control over infrastructure projects in exchange for long-term capital support from foreign partners.

“The key is to bring it to the private sector in an acceptable way and create a good opportunity for colleagues in our pension funds,” he said. “There’s no point in passing a capital check if you have no influence on things like construction.”

UK infrastructure investors have called for replacing the private finance initiative since it was scrapped in 2018. But the government preferred the regulated asset base model, used for water companies and airports, to drive private-sector investment in new projects like nuclear power plants.

The £ 28.5 billion includes Macquarie’s plans to invest at least £ 12 billion by 2030 in water assets, wind farms and gas networks.

Worley Energy and Chemicals Group has said it will expand operations in the UK with more than 1,000 new jobs in the next 18 months. A similar number of roles are guaranteed by the renewable energy company Fortescue Future Industries after acquiring Williams Advanced Engineering at Oxford this month.

However, Matthew Lawrence, director of the Common Wealth’s think tank, argued that vital infrastructure should be publicly owned. “The record of private investors holding vital infrastructure in the UK has not been given to consumers, businesses or the environment,” he said. “Debts exploded, dividend payments went up and performance was loose.”

The promises come amid a wave of recent international deals for UK infrastructure, which provide a guaranteed long-term guaranteed income backed by the government.

The National Network on Sunday Sold 60 percent of the shares In the UK business, its gas goes to a consortium of investors in Australia and North America, led by Macquarie. The Danish energy company Ørsted sold 50 percent of the development of the proposed wind farm Hornsea 2 to the French bank Crédit Agricole and the insurance company Axa in a deal of £ 3 billion.

Macquarie also competes with KKR Private Equity Group to acquire UK’s largest electricity distributor UK Power Networks Notebooks controlled by Hong Kong billionaire Lee’s family.

Another report by Chris Flood

Australian groups pledge to invest £28.5bn in UK over next decade Source link Australian groups pledge to invest £28.5bn in UK over next decade

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