find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Competition, Policy & Regulatory
Category: Other | Location: Sydney CBD, Inner West & Eastern Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Work with a well regarded Partner · Sydney CBD
View details
Commercial Litigation Senior Associate
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Sydney CBD, Inner West & Eastern Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Lawyers Weekly Australia Partner of the Year 2016, Insolvency
View details
MULTIPLEX Regional Legal Counsel (Vic) | 7 to 10 years + PQE
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Career defining in-house role · Tier One international contractor
View details
Junior Lawyer - Personal Injury Law
Category: Personal Injury Law | Location: Parramatta & Western Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Highly specialized practice · Challenging role with great opportunities
View details
IR Advisor/Member Advocate
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: St Leonards NSW 2065
· Permanent (0.8-1.0 FTE) role in a developing team
View details
Infrastructure ‘boom’ drives up NSW legal activity

Infrastructure ‘boom’ drives up NSW legal activity

Chris Redden Norton Rose Fulbright

A healthy pipeline for infrastructure – particularly in asset recycling – is creating opportunities, but competition among firms is fierce.

Norton Rose Fulbright partner Chris Redden (pictured), from the firm’s Sydney banking and finance practice, believes asset recycling at a state level has made infrastructure a major growth sector.

“It's fair to say that across the board we're seeing an infrastructure boom in New South Wales, probably for the next decade,” Mr Redden said.

He pointed to the privatisations of Port Kembla, Port Botany and the Port of Newcastle, as well as the $20 billion “poles and wires” project.

“That asset recycling, particularly in New South Wales, drives a lot of M&A activity,” Mr Redden said. “Apart from the M&A and banking and finance legal teams, other practice areas in a law firm get heavily involved in due diligence and other specialist aspects of those deals.

“Lawyers will be very busy, for a long period of time. I think the work is across disciplines within law. And it's not just private practice – it's government and in- house lawyers too.”

Mr Redden credited premier Mike Baird with pushing a strong development agenda.

“Baird is passionate about getting New South Wales to a place where it has the infrastructure it requires, not just now but for the future,” Mr Redden said.

He also pointed to other infrastructure projects, such as private asset sales, public-private partnerships (PPPs) and greenfield developments, as strong growth areas in the state and predicted that social projects such as prisons or hospitals were also in the works.

National perspective

In other states, infrastructure activity lags behind New South Wales.

Norton Rose Fulbright Melbourne construction and engineering partner James Morgan-Payler believes the Victorian infrastructure sector is also seeing strong activity, but not at New South Wales levels.

He believes the market remains cautious after the planned East-West link was blocked by a change of government.

"While Victoria does have projects such as Melbourne Metro, level crossings and Vic Rolling Stock it’s not the same sort of pipeline or level of investment,” Mr Morgan-Payler said.

Asset recycling in Queensland, meanwhile, has been stymied by a government elected on a ‘no privatisation’ platform, Mr Redden said, suggesting its market was likely to focus on PPPs.

Western Australia, on the other hand, may begin to consider asset-recycling programs as mining activity weakens and the government faces a deficit.

Overall, Mr Morgan-Payler suggested the trend has been towards mega-deals, which amps up competition between firms.

“There will be those that are involved in the projects and those that aren't involved. They have multiple bidders and multiple roles, so there is going to be a lot of activity. But the need to get on these projects is increasing.”

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Infrastructure ‘boom’ drives up NSW legal activity
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Human body, illegal organ trafficking, ALHR
Sep 22 2017
Australia poised to combat illegal organ harvesting: ALHR
The Australian Lawyers for Human Rights are calling for changes to the law so that organ trafficking...
Online service, barristers, BarristerSELECT, Stephen Foley
Sep 22 2017
New online service leverages barristers’ clerks to aid briefing
A new online tool has been launched to help NSW solicitors find the most suitable barristers for the...
NSW District Court judge, Tim Gartelmann SC, next appointment,
Sep 22 2017
Silk replaces outgoing NSW District Court judge
A barrister has been named as the next appointment to the NSW District Court, following the retireme...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...