ukBritish pension funds aim to launch a multibillion-pound infrastructure fund next year that will invest up to £4bn in government projects from roads and high-speed rail lines to power stations.

The Pension Protection Fund and the National Association of Pension Funds are in discussions with 20 others to create a vehicle that will consider investing in the projects outlined by the chancellor, George Osborne, in last year’s national infrastructure plan. That shortlist will be whittled down to between 10 and 12 contributors, who are expected to put in starter capital – to fund staff hires – and a further cash injection to launch the investment fund. The NAPF and PPF are aiming to raise between £1bn and £2bn in an initial fundraising drive that could rise to between £3bn and £4bn with leverage, as they target a launch date of January 2013.