As private banks turn away from fossil fuel projects, Australia’s public finance banks are stepping in to get them off the ground.
Our recent paper, Hot Money, reveals that Export Finance Australia gave up to $1.69 billion dollars in Australian government-backed financing to the coal, oil and gas industries between 2009–2020. This is 80 times more than it gave to renewable energy.
The Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility has supported two large fossil fuel developments and is expected to fund more in the future.
"This is a significant missed opportunity to make Australia a renewable energy superpower. We’re taking risks on old infrastructure instead of looking forward."
Luke Fletcher—Executive Director, Jubilee Australia
What should Australia do?
The Australian government can make Export Finance Australia (EFA) and the Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) more accountable by:
Directing EFA and the NAIF to stop funding coal, oil and gas projects and supporting stronger action against fossil fuel financing at the OECD working group on export credits.
Revoking EFA’s exemption from the Freedom of Information Act, which gives the public rights of access to official government documents.
Ensuring that parliamentary scrutiny is applied to any financing being considered for projects deemed to be in the national interest.
Making it mandatory for EFA and NAIF to publish key project documents on their websites for public comment before deciding to back a project.