Patience, please: Ottawa’s infrastructure bank needs time to work
By Jim Leech, retired president and CEO of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
In its first 12 months, the CIB has announced involvement in five new projects – more than $3.25-billion committed – and has announced it has an additional 25 projects currently under consideration. Experience from the private sector would suggest that is pretty good in such a short time.
Contrecœur Port Terminal Project
Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the Metropolitan Montreal Chamber of Commerce
We salute the commitment of the CIB, which supports the realization of a highly strategic project for Greater Montreal. This commitment demonstrates the importance of the expansion of the Port of Montreal to Contrecœur to ensure the economic growth of the city and of Canada as a whole. Considering the investments already announced for the VIA Rail EMR and High Frequency Train, we are very pleased to see that the CIB continues to support projects that are structuring for the metropolitan region.
Sylvie Vachon, CEO, Port of Montreal
This commitment by the @cib_en is a milestone for the advancement of our project #terminalContrecœur towards its realization. This collaboration confirms the national importance of our project.
Federation of Quebec Chambers of Commerce
Announcement this morning of the collaboration agreement between @cib_en and @PortMTL for a possible investment for the container terminal, represents a step further for the advancement of expansion projects to #Contrecœur
Logistics and Transportation Cluster of Metropolitan Montreal
Collaborative announcement this morning between @cib_en and PortMTL for the advancement of the project from the new terminal to #Contrecœur. Good news for the hub of Greater Montreal!
Lulu Island District Energy Project
City of Richmond
#RichmondBC is no stranger to #districtenergy utilities with 2 national & int’l award winning projects to date, reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by using geothermal & waste energy. A partnership with @cib_en would further our success to reduce GHGs 50% by 2030. #Rmd50x30
Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships
Great to see the @cib_en team explore a district energy opportunity in BritishColumbia. Along with Mapleton, this is the second green project @cib_en has looked at and specifically one that is relevant for the future #lowcarbon economy.
Mapleton Water and Wastewater Project
Ontario Sewer and Watermain Construction Association
Really exciting project just announced by the @cib_en in Mapleton to manage the township’s #water and #wastewater #infrastructure for up to 20 years! Exciting move forward to bring much needed investment to rural water systems: https://bit.ly/2YW0RF4 #onpoli
Interesting first investment in green #infrastructure from @cib_en which could provide a template for other similar wastewater projects.
VIA Rail Project
Statement from Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal
Michel Leblanc, President and CEO
The announcement that the Canada Infrastructure Bank is involved in the file is particularly promising because it will accelerate upstream planning and the eventual completion of the project.
Ontario Chamber of Commerce
We are pleased to see that @VIA_Rail’s proposed High Frequency Rail project is closer to being implemented, thanks to additional funding from the Government of Canada & @cib_en to explore this project. Read our transportation report.
Rail transportation – with its robust carrying capacity, solid safety record, & comparatively low environmental impact – plays a critical role in our economy. This project will benefit businesses & the everyday lives of Ontarians and across Canada.
Canadian Urban Transit Association
We are very excited to see @cib_en investing $71 million into @Via_Rail High Frequency Rail in the Quebec City-Toronto corridor. Better, more frequent rail services will help reduce road #congestion and GHG emissions in Canada.
GO Expansion – On Corridor Project
Toronto Region Board of Trade
“Toronto Region Board of Trade congratulates the Canada Infrastructure Bank for its second investment decision in its short history, building on its already-productive investment in the REM light rail project in Montreal,” said Jan De Silva, President & CEO, Toronto Region Board of Trade. “As a strong supporter of the concept of the Canada Infrastructure Bank and its potential to leverage new kinds of investments in major infrastructure projects, we and our big-city Chamber colleagues in the Canadian Global Cities Council can now point to two major transit-related investments in Canada’s two largest cities. Canadians in other cities and regions can be surer than ever that funding support for projects that can draw private investment will roll across the country as appropriate deals come forward.”
Ontario Chamber of Commerce
“We are pleased to see critical investments being made in our Province that will ensure commuters and businesses have access to long-term and reliable transportation. This $2 billion commitment by the CIB delivers new money for GTHA transit and will attract additional investment from the private sector that will strengthen Ontario’s economy.
“Today’s announcement fits well within the CIB legislated intent. From a public policy standpoint, the CIB provides opportunities to improve the delivery of new infrastructure projects and produce a socially beneficial result. The investment in Ontario’s GO Expansion fulfills those goals.”
Canadian Urban Transit Association
CUTA is excited to see a joint @cib_en @InfraOntario $2 billion investment in the @Metrolinx rail network.
Banking on Infrastructure – TD Economics
“CIB’s stated emphasis on revenue-generating projects and the prospect of innovation around asset ownership structures should serve to clearly differentiate it. Moreover, independence in how the CIB achieves its goals will both further distinguish the agency from its existing counterparts, and attract private capital. These characteristics should ensure that the CIB is truly additive to the Canadian infrastructure ecosystem.”
Canada’s Infrastructure Bank Done Right – C.D. Howe
“Congratulations on establishing the Canadian Infrastructure Bank which, based on evidence, will advise, design and negotiate revenue generating projects as well as using innovative tools to invest in and attract private support for projects of national and regional importance. Congratulations on your focus on “revenue generating projects”. […] The purpose of infrastructure investment is to facilitate future growth of income and jobs, not just create jobs today that will be gone tomorrow. Really productive infrastructure projects take time to plan, to build, and to integrate with other investments both public and private.”
Canada’s Infrastructure Revival: Let’s Get the Biggest Bang for Our Buck – Public Policy Forum
“Canada is experiencing an infrastructure revival like almost never before. It is on a scale approaching the construction of the 1950s and 1960s, when modern Canada—our universities and colleges, our hospitals, our highways—was built. […] Infrastructure, in particular, still suffers from a stigma as a cyclical investment, made when the economy needs a boost, as opposed to a long-term tool for productivity and competitiveness. Fast is good but good is better. […] The federal government has set up what promises to be a world-class infrastructure agency in the CIB. The CIB is focused primarily on leveraging $35-billion in seed capital to draw in private and institutional money to build revenue-generating infrastructure. The CIB also has been charged with leading a broader effort to gather infrastructure data and information nationwide to improve the evidence base for decision-making. To that end, as the CIB moves from start-up to build-out and steady-state operations, it will be well placed to participate in conversations about Canada’s infrastructure priorities and provide thought leadership on how best to get these done.”
For Canada’s Growth, a Second Phase of Infrastructure Investment is Key – David Dodge, Kevin Lynch and Tiff Macklem, Globe and Mail
“Strategic infrastructure that unlocks private sector investment and innovation and provides gateways to new markets is an essential part of the solution. […] Executing a strategic investment plan focused on enhancing long-term productivity growth will require institutional structures with the resources and credibility to attract first-class talent in infrastructure investment, a sufficient scale and runway to attract large outside pools of capital, and sufficient independence to provide transparent and rigorous investment advice to government.”