The five-year infrastructure pipeline of major projects has grown in Queensland by more than $10 billion in the last 12 months, according to a new report.
The Queensland Major Projects Pipeline report is produced by Queensland Major Contractors Association (QMCA) and Infrastructure Association of Queensland (IAQ).
It details the pipeline of major infrastructure projects within Queensland across the next five years, totaling more than $50 billion in works that are planned, funded or in construction.
“We are delighted to see significant growth in the pipeline, with works totalling $50.6 billion scheduled between 2019/20 and 2023/24,” QMCA chief executive officer Jon Davies said.
“However, there is still an element of risk around the total figure as $23.2 billion of work is not funded at this stage. This is mostly down to planned resources and energy projects which take considerable time to plan, fund and gain approval.
“Overall there are reasons to be optimistic, with many major projects such as Inland Rail, Cross River Rail, Brisbane Metro and upgrades to the M1, Bruce Highway and essential water infrastructure developments beginning in earnest.
“There is also good news for regional Queensland with significant increases in funded work in the pipeline for the Darling Downs-Maranoa, Townsville and Fitzroy regions, with smaller increases for the Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Wide Bay and Cairns regions.”
An area for concern is the proportion of project work in the report that is still unfunded.
Funded work in 2019/20 and 2020/21 is currently about $1 billion lower than total work in 2018/19 ($7 billion).
On current funding status, the five projected years to 2023/24 sees lower levels of funded work than in 2018/19.
But the report authors say 2022/23 has the potential to be the strongest year of major project activity since 2014/15.
Total (funded plus unfunded) activity is 83 per cent higher than 2018/19 levels if all projects were to proceed. However, 60 per cent of the projected work in that year is currently unfunded.
Unfunded activity in that year is highly concentrated in resources projects ($4.8 billion) as well as water ($813m), electricity ($750m) and roads ($560m).
The report also notes the economic risk posed by the unfolding coronavirus situation.