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New Zealand Infrastructure Commission visits ICE HQ

26 March 2024
New Zealand Infrastructure Commission visits ICE HQ

Infrastructure, ultimately, is for the public.

Shifting the debate to focus on outcomes and services is one of the ICE's foremost aims.

This was the topic of a recent discussion with Ross Copland, CEO of the New Zealand Infrastructure Commission, at the ICE's headquarters at One Great George Street.

About NZIC

Te Waihanga, the New Zealand Infrastructure Commission (NZIC), is an independent agency that offers strategic infrastructure policy advice to the New Zealand government.

Founded in 2019, the commission has been a positive addition to the global discussion, and the ICE has worked closely with them in recent years.

A wide-ranging conversation

ICE director general Janet Young and director of policy Chris Richards met Ross in March during an NZIC study tour to London.

The wide-ranging conversation covered:

  • energy price differences;
  • housing supply;
  • benchmarking infrastructure delivery internationally;
  • appraising and consenting processes; and
  • how to stimulate discussion about infrastructure that focuses on outcomes and public services.

Why this is important

The ICE envisions a world that has the engineering capacity and infrastructure systems it needs for people and the planet to thrive.

With the UK and New Zealand facing similar policy challenges, from housing shortages to cost overruns, there are ample opportunities to collaborate and share learning.

NZIC has produced international benchmarking studies that have already begun to progress the debate on common challenges, such as improving infrastructure delivery.

This proactive approach delivers great value, and the ICE collaborates closely with the commission as part of its international policy work.

In November 2022, Ross participated in an ICE presidential roundtable to help identify global best practice in managing infrastructure delivery costs.

Next steps

Convening and sharing knowledge internationally is a fundamental part of the ICE’s policy work.

This meeting helped the ICE better understand the reform programme New Zealand’s new National-led coalition government is driving, and the lessons other countries could learn.

The meeting also identified opportunities for New Zealand to leverage the ICE’s expert global network, and where the institution can support this, particularly through the ICE-led Enabling Better Infrastructure (EBI) programme.

  • Ben Gosling, speechwriter and policy content manager at ICE