QIC lines up A$4bn toll roads sale

The sale of toll road portfolio Queensland Motorways is expected to mark the largest infrastructure deal in Australia.

Government-owned Queensland Investment Corporation (QIC) is positioning its toll road assets for a sale, appointing Macquarie Group and UBS to put a deal together.

QIC, a A$50 billion (€37 billion; $47 billion) asset manager headquartered in Brisbane, Australia, confirmed that Queensland Motorways Management, operator of a toll road portfolio, would be divested.

The announcement ended long-standing market speculation that QIC would unload Queensland Motorways, or take the company public.

Queensland Motorways is the operator of the ‘Clem7’ or Clem Jones Tunnel, Gateway Motorway in Brisbane, the 19-mile Logan Motorway, the Go Between Bridge and Legacy Way.

The portfolio is estimated to be worth A$4 billion and a sale would be the largest-ever infrastructure deal in Australia, QIC chief executive Damon Frawley noted in a statement.

The process of selling Queensland Motorways is expected to begin in earnest in 2014.

Toll road operator Transurban Group, which is interested in acquiring the Cross City Tunnel in Sydney, has expressed its intent to pursue Queensland Motorways.

Abertis, fund manager IFM Investors (formerly Industry Funds Management) as well as Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan are also expected to be interested in acquiring Queensland Motorways.