7 August 2014 —BRIEF: The Queensland branch of Engineers Australia has called for the Queensland government to address the significant shortfalls in infrastructure planning for the state following the release of the community-led Queensland Plan, saying that resource spending is no longer masking low levels of spending on public infrastructure.

“The development of infrastructure in Australia is fragmented, uncoordinated, stop-start and lacks a visionary strategic plan,” Engineers Australia Queensland general manager Ian McEwan said. “As a result the engineering profession has gone from major skills shortages to major employment uncertainty in the space of two years. Without a transparent and coordinated commitment to infrastructure investment, this cycle will continue.

The Queensland Plan provides a framework to understand the views of the community. This is a wonderful opportunity for the government to deliver a transparent long-term infrastructure plan to outline how it will meet the community’s expectations. Without this transparent long-term planning, Queensland will rely on short-term political infrastructure decisions based around election cycles, which usually leads to intermittent, big ticket infrastructure spending.

“While we do note that the Queensland Government announced some $8.5 billion of investment in infrastructure as part of the last Queensland budget, details of when these projects will be rolled out remain unknown as it is subject to receiving a mandate at the next election to sell assets. This uncertainty is having a large impact on industry confidence and skills retention.”

Read the Queensland Plan here.