Good and bad in snapshot of rail freight performance

Trainline 3 shows rail-freight transit times improve two out of three routes but intermodal tonnes fell

Good and bad in snapshot of rail freight performance
Warren Truss says freight rail will need to play an increasingly important role


Rail freight transit times are better two of the nation’s three principal routes, the latest Trainline 3 report shows.

The report is a joint annual publication from the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics and the Australasian Railway Association.

"Scheduled intermodal freight train transit times on the north-south interstate corridor have decreased compared to the previous financial year," it says.

"Transit times on the central corridor are largely unchanged.

"Transit times on the Melbourne-Perth corridor have reduced slightly while on the Sydney-Perth corridor they have increased slightly."

However, intermodal freight, which grew significantly from 19,519 thousand net tonnes in 2009–10 to 27,559 net thousand tonnes in 2012–13, fell to 21,891 thousand net tonnes in 2013–14, down about 21 per cent.

"Rail is no longer only being viewed as just a long distance and bulk carrier. Indeed, freight rail will need to play an increasingly important role in the movement of goods across the short distances between ports and inland freight terminals," federal infrastructure minister Warren Truss says.

"The development of the Moorebank Intermodal Terminal will enable future expansion of Port Botany's container handling capacity, and investment and employment opportunities in Western Sydney.

"The project will create around 7,700 ongoing operating jobs and more than 1,300 construction jobs in south-west Sydney."

"Effective rail connections to our national ports are vital for economic growth, and the Government is committed to enhancing these connections.

"The Australian government is also committed to deliver Inland Rail which carries clear benefits for rail freight.

"It promises to deliver economic benefits of around $22.5 billion and create up to 16,000 direct jobs during its 10-year construction period."

The full report can be found here.


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