Adani’s ability to access new loan unknown
ADANI'S eligibility to apply for a new loan facility remains unclear even though the legislation underpinning that facility is due to hit the senate today.
The $5 billion Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility legislation is likely to be debated in the Senate sometime today.
If successful it would offer up to $5 billion in concessional finance to encourage private sector investment in economic infrastructure that otherwise would not be built or not be built for some time.
While one of the Federal Ministers for Northern Australia Josh Frydenberg has said Adani would not be a priority for the loan, Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen said at this stage Adani should have as good a chance as any other project because no one would be given priority.
With funding being one of the major question marks surrounding Adani Enterprises's $16 billion rail, port and mine project, even State Treasurer Curtis Pitt weighed in, calling on ministers to clear up the confusion.
He believed Adani's proposed 189km of rail line and the "more than 1000" jobs it would create in the construction phase would be a good fit for the concessional loan criteria.
"We've actually had two different ministers for Northern Australia in Josh Frydenberg and Matt Canavan contradicting each other and, in some cases even themselves, on whether or not it's (Adani) included," Mr Pitt said.
"What we're seeking is to have clarity around whether or not that project could be included."
When questioned about Adani's eligibility last week, Mr Frydenberg said, "The Carmichael project is a commercial operation and it needs to stand on its own two feet".
He reiterated all investment decisions for the NAIF would be made by an independent board.
Mr Christensen said he "didn't disagree" with Mr Frydenberg but said there would be no priorities.
He also said loans to the Mackay Airport to build a freight logistics hub or to the Mackay Port for expansion may be the type of other projects eligible through the NAIF.
VIEW THE INTERACTIVE: HOW ADANI IS CHANGING CQ:
Would give concessional loans to certain infrastructure projects likely to drive economic growth
It's not clear if Adani would be eligible
Mackay's airport and port are likely to be, if they wanted to expand.