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Infrastructure Conference tackles the Christchurch rebuild

Media Release
20 August 2012

Building Nations Infrastructure Conference tackles the Christchurch rebuild, insurance, transport funding and local government reform

New forms of transport funding, local government reform and insurance, the Christchurch rebuild and infrastructure resilience are the three key themes of New Zealand's largest infrastructure conference being held on Tuesday and Wednesday this week in Wellington.

The New Zealand Council For Infrastructure Development Building Nations Symposium has attracted nearly 300 delegates from the public and private sectors. Attendees include central and local government officials together with industry leaders from the design, construction, finance and legal and professional advisory firms.

"This is the peak infrastructure industry conference in New Zealand", says NZCID Chief Executive Stephen Selwood.

"We aim to address the key issues facing the infrastructure sector each year and discuss ways to resolve problems.

"It is clear that if New Zealand is to realise its potential for economic growth new methods of funding investment in our transport system will be required especially given the level of investment necessary in Auckland.

"Equally it is critical that we address the difficulties in insurance and speed up the reconstruction of Christchurch.

"The government's desire to improve delivery of local infrastructure signals the need for new thinking in local government organisation and procurement.

"And earthquake risk, other natural disasters and the ongoing effects of climate change mean that we must continually review the resilience of our infrastructure, especially our critical network infrastructure.

"All of these public policy issues will be debated and discussed. The Symposium provides the opportunity for the best minds in infrastructure delivery to meet and work with public sector officials and government leaders to share knowledge and experience and discuss new ideas.

"Keynote speakers include Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance the Hon Bill English and Transport and Earthquake Recovery Minister the Hon Gerry Brownlee. In addition to Ministerial presentations, a panel of government and opposition spokes people will debate alternative views on infrastructure procurement.

"Premier sponsor of the Symposium, ANZ Bank, have brought out Michael Deegan, Head of Infrastructure Australia to present on the current state of play in Australia. ANZ are also hosting the gala dinner for delegates at Te Papa with men's Olympic gold medal rowing pair Hamish Bond & Eric Murray being interviewed by Sky Sports' Scotty Stevenson.

"Other international speakers include Mick Lilley, Managing Director, Infrastructure and Natural Resources Advisory, National Australia Bank, who will discuss public private partnerships from an Australian and New Zealand perspective.

"Dr Jonas Eliasson, Director, Centre for Transport Studies in Sweden and Gunnar Soderholm, Director, Environment and Health Administration, City of Stockholm will explain the secrets of success in introducing road pricing in Stockholm by video conference all the way from Chicago.

"Thomas O'Rourke, Professor of Engineering, School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Cornell University (USA) will update worldwide thinking on developing resilient national infrastructure including critical policy planning issues for New Zealand.

"New Zealand speakers and panellists include leading public officials and experts in finance all discussing advanced procurement, the Christchurch rebuild, insurance, resilience and local government reform.

"This is a key event for NZCID each calendar year. We are very pleased to be in Wellington. It's great to have such strong representation from central government.

"The learning from the conference will form the basis for NZCID policy about how we and our members can help advance best practice in infrastructure delivery in New Zealand", Selwood says.
A copy of the symposium agenda is available at:
About the New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development
NZCID is New Zealand's peak infrastructure industry body. Established in 2004, NZCID's purpose is to advance best practice in national infrastructure development through research, advocacy and public and private sector collaboration. NZCID members come from diverse sectors across New Zealand, equity owners, service providers, public sector agencies and major infrastructure users. Further information about NZCID and its members is available at

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