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Asia-Pacific To Be Dominant Driver In Global Infrastructure Investment

Asia Pacific: International law firm CMS released a report which found that Australia, Singapore and China are driving momentum and interest for infrastructure investment in the Asia-Pacific region.

The report ranked 40 jurisdictions in order of infrastructure investment attractiveness according to six key criteria, including economic status, sustainability and innovation, as well as ease of doing business.

Four of the top 20 spots for investment attractiveness were secured by Asia-Pacific countries in the report, with robust economic growth across the region, ambitious renewables plans, and the world’s largest infrastructure project—China’s Belt And Road—set to reshape the continent’s landscape over the next decade.

Top Asia-Pacific countries by ranking. Image Source: CMS

The Netherlands claimed top spot overall, despite a prolonged period with no government at all, after seeing the highest GDP growth since 2007, around 3.3 percent in 2017. The country’s success was in part down to its transparent and efficient procurement process, and its healthy multi-billion euro pipeline in road and water public-private-partnerships. Other countries in the top five included Canada, Germany, the UK and Australia.

Co-head of infrastructure and project finance in the UK and CMS partner, Kristy Duane, commented, “From China’s Belt and Road to the UK’s Brexit bump in the road, politics and policy remain central to shaping infrastructure investment flows globally.”

China’s Belt And Road initiative continues to deliver on the promised infrastructure boom in Asia. Given the longevity of this project, changes in the balance of infrastructure investment in the region are likely to be profound. Though ranked at 20th position in the Index, China is primed to become a global engine of investment, with close to a trillion dollars expected to flow through the initiative by its completion, whilst highly ranked countries such as Australia and Singapore continue to benefit from stable and prosperous economies.

Australia’s federal target of 33,000 GWh generated from renewable sources by 2020 has led to increased investment in solar and wind projects, and Singapore’s multi-billion-dollar development of Changi Airport’s Terminal 5 and the Tuas shipping megaport will solidify its position as a premier transport and trade hub globally. Further afield, opportunities in the likes of Malaysia and India are plenty— with renewable energy set to play a central role in future projects.

Adrian Wong, Partner at CMS Singapore said, “The Asia-Pacific region is home to some of the world’s fastest growing economies and most ambitious infrastructure projects, and the spread of four countries within the Index top 20 reflects an ever developing opportunity for investment. While key success factors like government stability and political certainty cannot be ignored, the potential impact of the Belt And Road Initiative alone promises to stimulate economic growth through the continent and far beyond.”

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