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Insights from Paul Kenny about areas of significant growth in the Government sector
Paul discusses infrastructure creation through the Asset Recycling Agreement and the challenges of regulatory and legislative reform required to underpin these public asset sales. He also discusses the issue of government outsourcing, and the challenges and opportunities these activities will generate.
Government departments, agencies and statutory authorities have an expanding and critical influence upon Australia's corporate landscape.
Allens has extensive experience and has advised governments around Australia on some of the country's most complex reform, infrastructure development, divestment and privatisation projects. In many cases, we have been involved in developing novel and innovative approaches to assist in the delivery of public sector projects that were the first of their type. Allens has also advised a number of foreign governments, including the Government of the Philippines, the Royal Government of Cambodia, the Indonesian Government and the Papua New Guinea Government, on a range of transactions, capacity building and public policy assignments.
Government – A different dimension
Our team understands government processes and drivers. We understand the importance of the political environment for our government clients and we know how government processes differ from private sector transactions. We know how to work with government clients, and the complex stakeholder environments in which they operate. Our team is experienced in balancing policy, market, legal, commercial, regulatory and logistical issues. We use this knowledge to help our clients achieve their objectives – whether they be to achieve legislative and regulatory reforms, value for money procurements or the delivery of major transactions on time and within budget.
Our government services
We advise our government sector clients on the full spectrum of legal issues they are likely to face, including:
- assisting with public sector projects such as privatisations, major infrastructure and procurement projects;
- developing policy and implementing legislative and regulatory reforms;
- working with regulatory bodies on the application of regulatory schemes;
- advising on the legislative frameworks within which statutory authorities and other government bodies operate;
- advising on public law matters including constitutional and administrative law issues; and
- acting on litigious matters including commissions and inquiries.
We also act for many private sector clients doing business with government. This gives us a clear understanding of the priorities, practices and expectations of the private sector in their dealings with government entities.
Deal: The Herston Quarter Redevelopment involves the staged $1.1 billion redevelopment of a 5-hectare site adjacent to the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital (RBWH).
Phases: The redevelopment involves the conversion of the existing site into a mixed-use precinct for health, bio-medical, commercial, residential, student accommodation and retail activity, comprising 11 stages.
Significance: This transaction is a significant project for the State of Queensland because it involves a multi-staged, master-planned redevelopment over the next decade. Also, it has unique tenure and governance models, given its long-term leasehold tenure, and complex site and interface issues, governance and stakeholder management.
Outcome: This transaction demonstrates the significance of our public sector practice and market-leading expertise on urban renewal projects, as this project and Queens Wharf are the largest Queensland Government-led redevelopment projects for many years.
Melbourne Train and Tram Refranchising
Deal: Public Transport Victoria (PTV) is responsible for managing outsourced passenger transport services in Victoria, where Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM) and Keolis Downer (KDR), respecitively, operate the metropolitan train and tram services.
Phases: Allens advised PTV on the structured negotiation process with MTM and KDR for new franchise agreements, which commenced 30 November 2017.
Significance: The MR4 project was a strategically significant project for PTV and the Victorian Government because it gave PTV the opportunity to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the franchise arrangements, for the benefit of its customers.
Outcome: PTV reviewed the franchise agreements to establish a best practice framework for the future operating environment, particularly regarding encouraging service innovation, incentivising performance, increasing financial sustainability and improving the passenger experience.