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Paul Kenny

Paul Kenny

Partner, Sector Leader, Government
BA LLB (Hons)
Melbourne | +61 3 9613 8860
Paul.Kenny@allens.com.au


Paul is the leader of Allens' government advisory practice. He has extensive experience advising government and private sector clients on commercial transactions, financing arrangements, major infrastructure projects and industry reform and restructure assignments.

Paul is recognised by Chambers Asia-Pacific 2017 as a leading lawyer and is acknowledged by sources to be 'very well regarded within government,' and as someone who combines being 'very strategic' with 'not overcomplicating things.'

In the energy sector, Paul's work has included advising governments in Australia and the Asia Pacific region on the comprehensive reform of the electricity and gas supply industries and their ongoing economic regulation. This experience includes advising the:

  • Victorian Government – in connection with the regulatory reform, corporatisation and subsequent privatisation of the State's electricity and gas utilities.
  • CoAG Gas Reform Task Force – on the development of the National Third Party Access Code for Natural Gas Pipelines and the related cooperative national legislative scheme.
  • Ministerial Council on Energy's Standing Committee of Officials – in connection with the reform of governance and institutional arrangements for the National Electricity Market, including the enactment of associated amendments to the National Electricity Law and the introduction of the National Electricity Rules.
  • Ministerial Council on Energy's Standing Committee of Officials – on the development of a national legislative and regulatory regime for energy distribution and retailing, including the development of the National Energy Retail Law and National Energy Retail Rules.
  • Government of Tasmania – on the proposed restructure of its electricity sector including the introduction of full retail competition and the privatisation of its electricity retail business.
  • Indonesian Government – on the establishment of an independent regulator, and the development of new regulatory arrangements, for Indonesia's electricity supply sector.
  • Energy Market Authority of Singapore – on the establishment of licensing arrangements for gas shipping and the operation of onshore gas receiving facilities.

Paul's transactional experience includes work in privatisation, project development and energy market contracting. This experience includes acting for:

  • The Victorian Government – on the sale of the Loy Yang B power station and GFE Resources Limited.
  • The purchaser on the acquisition through a competitive bidding process of the Dampier to Bunbury Natural Gas Pipeline.
  • Vicpower Trading – on the long term electricity supply contracts for the Portland and Point Henry aluminium smelters.
  • Vicpower Trading – on the offtake agreements for the Portland Wind Energy Project.
  • Comalco – on the acquisition of the Gladstone power station and in relation to the long term electricity supply contracts for the Bell Bay aluminium smelter.
  • The Victorian Government – on the renewal of the State Agreement and related coal mining lease supporting the operation of Alcoa's Anglesea power station.

In the area of infrastructure project development and regulation, Paul's experience includes substantial work on public transport franchising and infrastructure procurement projects in the transport, water, defence and other sectors. Since 1996, Paul has led the Allens team that has worked with the Victorian Government to reform its regional and metropolitan train and tram network through its privatisation and subsequent refranchising, as well as its procurement and financing of new rolling stock. Paul regularly assists the government to navigate the complex contractual and regulatory framework in which the sector operates.

Paul's experience includes advising the Victorian Government on the following substantial transactions:

  • the sale of the State's rail freight business, V/Line Freight, and the long term leasing of the regional rail infrastructure network;
  • the restructure of the Public Transport Corporation into separate transport businesses and the franchising of those businesses to private sector operators through an international tender process;
  • the acquisition and financing of new rolling stock;
  • the rail infrastructure works required to establish fast train links from Melbourne to four regional Victorian cities (the Regional Fast Train Project);
  • the redevelopment of Southern Cross Station in Melbourne's CBD;
  • the establishment of a statutory rail access regime under the Rail Corporation Act 1996 and the subsequent administration of the regime by the Essential Services Commission;
  • the substantial reform of Victoria's transport legislation through the enactment of the Transport Integration Act 2010; and
  • the establishment of the Public Transport Victoria as an independent statutory authority responsible for the administration of the State's public transport system.

In the water sector Paul's work has included acting for Melbourne Water in connection with the development of the Victorian Desalination Project, advising one of the consortia bidding for the Sydney Desalination Plant, and advising the Department of Sustainability and Environment in relation to the funding arrangements for the Northern Victorian Irrigation Renewal Project and the sale of water shares derived from the Project to the Commonwealth.

Paul has been involved in advising governments on the development and implementation of access regimes in relation to electricity, gas, rail and water infrastructure. He was a member of the Expert Panel on Energy Access Pricing which reported to the Ministerial Council on Energy in 2006, resulting in substantial changes to the access regimes for electricity and gas distribution and transmission networks.

Paul has been trained formally in Legal Project Management, most recently attending a full-day LPM workshop delivered by US legal project management expert Susan Raridon Lambreth. Paul's LPM expertise drives efficient legal and business outcomes for his clients.