Infrastructure Bank chief clashes with MPs over private-sector investment

DM

The head of the Canada Infrastructure Bank clashed with members of Parliament at a committee hearing on Tuesday about whether the federal financing agency was living up to its mandate of generating private-sector funding for its investments. In response to questioning from Conservative MP Andrew Scheer, CIB chief executive Ehren Cory defended the organization by pointing to the involvement of what he called non-governmental investors in certain projects, such as Alberta irrigation districts for irrigation infrastructure in the province. “I’m not willing to concede that that’s a private-sector entity,” Scheer said. “Where are the independent, private-sector hedge funds, the private-sector mutual funds, the private-sector banks, the private-sector capital that you promised, that this government promised?” The exchange came on the heels of a report from Parliament’s budget watchdog that said the four-year-old infrastructure bank has yet to meet its mandate of pulling in private dollars for major projects.

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