Jim Leech, named special advisor to Canada Infrastructure Bank
The Prime Minister’s office has announced that Jim Leech will be serving as special advisor on the Canada Infrastructure Bank.
Currently Chancellor of Queen’s University and chair of both the MasterCard Foundation and Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation, in 2014 Leech retired as president and CEO of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.
Prior to becoming CEO he led Teachers’ Private Capital, the pension plan’s private investing arm where he oversaw the growth in private equity, venture capital, and infrastructure investments from $2 billion in 2001 to over $20 billion by 2007.
“The renewal of aging infrastructure and creation of new infrastructure is a hot topic around the world—governments of all stripes and at all levels are seeking to modernize their economic backbones,” said Leech in a release issued by Queens University. “I believe that, if done right, an Infrastructure Bank will give Canada a competitive advantage in the global quest for infrastructure funding and development. I am honoured that the Prime Minister has asked me to contribute to moving the Bank from concept to reality”
Leech will work in collaboration with the Privy Council Office, the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and the Minister of Finance to expedite the swift creation of the Canada Infrastructure Bank. He will guide an implementation team, engage with stakeholders, provide strategic advice on the way forward, and help oversee an open and transparent process to recruit board members for the Canada Infrastructure Bank.
Announced in the Fall Economic Statement, the Canada Infrastructure Bank will provide financing for infrastructure projects, and help more projects get built in Canada.
“Mr. Leech brings with him immense knowledge and experience, and I am confident that he will help ensure a smooth and successful launch of the Canada Infrastructure Bank,” said Prime MinisterJustin Trudeau in a release.
The Fall Economic Statement announced the government’s intention to create the Canada Infrastructure Bank that will work with provinces, territories, and municipalities to further the reach of government funding directed to infrastructure.
- The Canada Infrastructure Bank will be responsible for investing at least $35 billion from the federal government into large infrastructure projects that contribute to economic growth through a broad range of financial instruments including loans and equity investments.
- Part of this amount – $15 billion – will come from the funding announced for infrastructure in the Fall Economic Statement.
- The objective of the Canada Infrastructure Bank will be to structure its financial support in order to attract private sector capital into infrastructure projects.
- In Budget 2016, the government made a down payment on future growth by making immediate investments of $11.9 billion in public transit, green infrastructure and social infrastructure.
- The Fall Economic Statement proposes an additional $81 billion through to 2027–28 in public transit, green and social infrastructure, transportation infrastructure that supports trade, and rural and northern communities.
- Taking into account existing programs, new investments made in Budget 2016 and the additional investments contained in the Fall Economic Statement, the Government of Canada will invest more than $180 billion in infrastructure over 12 years.