The Lane Cove Tunnel proceeds apace with the opening
and a month of free travel still ahead of schedule and the March state
election. But there are rumours that payments for owner drivers working
on the project aren’t moving as quickly as the tunnel itself.

I’m reliably told payment for some truckies has blown
out to 60 days and more. What with the cost of fuel these days, never mind
rising tip fees and toll road costs, slow payment is a cruel thing.

So what’s the problem? The man at the top of the
tunnel’s corporate tree is Hong Kong’s Li
Ka-shing – the tenth richest individual in the world, according to Forbes, so it’s not likely he’s run out of cash.

Leighton Holdings has the contract to build the thing,
but Wal King’s outfit has been reporting good enough profits lately and will do
nicely out of finishing early, plus it has a reputation to uphold, so it’s
unlikely to be them.

Who then? Over to you, Wal…

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey