Some of you will be directly impacted by certain aspects of this year’s Federal Budget. These impacts require specific consideration and we do not propose to duplicate expert analysis of these changes already published.
Instead, we wish to remind you that:
- while some funding has been deferred or reduced, most of the government funding opportunities for clean energy, energy efficiency and emission reduction projects are still available;
- in particular, manufacturers are encouraged to assess whether they can take advantage of funding brought forward to FY15 under the Clean Technology Programs;
- following a recent consultation process, ARENA intends to release the completed General Funding Strategy and Investment Plan 2013–14 to 2015–16 in July 2013; and
- project proponents may also be able to obtain some financing from the CEFC.
Relevantly, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation Investment Mandate Direction 2013 (Cth) was recently published for the purposes of setting out the Government’s expectations that, when investing in financial products and structures and making other investment decisions, the CEFC will adopt a commercial approach on the basis that it is not a grants organisation and that the investments must be made to catalyse the flow of finance to the clean energy sector with the expectation of being repaid.
More specifically, the CEFC must invest responsibly and manage risk appropriately so that it is financially self-sufficient and achieves a benchmark rate of return of the portfolio based on a weighted average of the five-year Australian Government bond rate.
If you haven’t done so already, we recommend considering the information available on the recently launched CEFC website and please do not hesitate to contact us or the CEFC for assistance.