Conference tackles the Christchurch rebuild

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.