As governments pick up the pace of spending on projects ranging from roads to bridges, rail, energy, public transit, and airports, infrastructure as an investment asset class will become increasingly attractive to individual investors looking to share in the growth, according to one leading investment manager.

“We estimate that in the next 20 years, global spending on infrastructure could be as high as US$20 trillion,” says Nick Langley of Sydney, Australia-based RARE Infrastructure, one of the world’s most experienced global infrastructure investment management teams and portfolio manager of the Renaissance Global Infrastructure Fund.

“Increased infrastructure spending has been the cornerstone of many government stimulus packages announced in response to the global slow down. We also expect regulators and governments to allow greater returns to infrastructure investors to attract private sector capital given the increasing pressure on public budgets,” Langley says.

For retail investors, the opportunity lies in public-private partnerships. As governments look to engage the private sector in their infrastructure initiatives, private sector project financing is attracting individual investors to this emerging asset class, which was once restricted to institutional investors only.

“Global infrastructure funds appeal to investors who want defensive investments to generate stable long-term cash flow, especially throughout retirement,” says Steve Geist, president of CIBC Asset Management. “Where there is a long-term need for investment, high returns can be sustainable and since the beginning of the decade, global infrastructure portfolios have consistently outpaced global equities indexes.”

Renaissance Investments offers Renaissance Global Infrastructure Fund, one of a few infrastructure funds on the market available to retail investors in Canada. A concentrated portfolio of infrastructure stocks managed by RARE Infrastructure, clients benefit from more than 70 years of combined global infrastructure expertise.

For those who prefer a broader blend of asset classes, the Renaissance Optimal Income Portfolio is diversified across six distinct funds, with a 15% concentration in the Renaissance Global Infrastructure Fund.

Renaissance Investments is offered by CIBC Asset Management Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of CIBC.