ALC calls for urgency on infrastructure

Report to highlight nation's present and future ability to meet freight transport needs

March 28, 2012

With infrastructure investment a resurgent hot topic for business, the Australian Logistics Council (ALC) is preparing to launch its Infrastructure Report on the first day of its Forum in Sydney tomorrow.

The peak body believes that, with road, rail and port infrastructure struggling with current demand and a freight task estimated to peak at 1,400 billion tonnes in a few decades, "a renewed sense of urgency is required".

"Australia’s future economic prosperity is inextricably linked to our ability to move goods around the country efficiently and safely, heightening the need for high quality and efficient road, rail and port infrastructure to meet current and future demand," ALC Deputy Chairman Andrew Ethell says.

"This is an issue for all levels of Government, but with strong leadership required from the federal level to ensure limited public funds are targeted at infrastructure projects which are in the national interest and have broad and lasting economic benefits.

"The provision of appropriate national infrastructure is also fundamental to ensuring we maximise the benefits from regulatory reform to the transport sector, including the creation of single regulators for heavy vehicles, rail safety and maritime safety.

"Improving efficiencies in the sector by streamlining the regulatory framework and investing in infrastructure is not only critical to building a stronger economy; it will also lead to cheaper goods on supermarket shelves which benefits all Australians."

He believes that getting the right infrastructure in the right place at the right time is critical to building a more internationally competitive Australian freight network.

"We must never forget Australia is part of a wider global supply chain and that one of the important pay-offs from infrastructure improvements at home is increasing our competitiveness on the international stage," Ethell says.

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