Victorian opposition releases freight plan

The state coalition wants to revamp Victoria’s freight network

Victorian opposition releases freight plan
The Victorian opposition wants to change the state's freight plans

The Victorian state opposition has released its plan to keep the freight network moving ahead of the upcoming election later this year.

The Liberal and Nationals coalition says Victoria will get a reliable freight network if they are elected in as the next state government ahead of the current Labor party government.

The opposition says the current government is ignoring ongoing issues with Victoria’s supply chain, instead saying that the state needs government that listens to industry stakeholders and makes commitments to fix the issues that matter most.

The opposition says its commitment to ensure Victoria’s supply chain is reliable and efficient includes making a $20 million, four-year investment into the Mode Shift Incentive Scheme to encourage industry to shift more containerised freight from road to rail.

By doing this, the opposition says it will provide certainty to transport operators and encourage long-term investment in Victorian freight facilities.

This idea was initially started by the opposition in 2012, but the coalition says it has since been slashed into single-year agreements by the current government along with funding cuts from $5 million per year to $3.5 million in 2022-23.

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The opposition also says it will work with the Australian Road Research Board to produce a ‘Gold Standard Freight Network’ that includes an analysis of the busiest and most important Victorian freight routes while also looking at issues preventing the running of more efficient trucks.

Victorian shadow minister for ports and freight Roma Britnell says the current government hasn’t produced a reliable freight network that’s fit for purpose.

"One thing we know is certain – if the Victorian supply chain is inefficient, everything below it crumbles," Britnell says.

"Our plan will ensure we get freight back onto rail where it is most efficient and get work started on the most important freight routes and make sure they’re up to standard for the most efficient class of vehicles."

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