WA regional freight network receives boost

The freight funding comes after a record harvest for the start

WA regional freight network receives boost
New funding will boost WA's freight rail infrastructure

Western Australia will receive a $200 million funding injection to improve its regional rail freight network and better connect key agricultural supply chains.

A joint scheme from the federal government ($160 million) and the WA state government ($40 million) will provide the money for the Agricultural Supply Chain Improvement (ASCI) program.

Our programs have been included in this first funding package to better connect WA’s agricultural supply chains and ensure freight can move efficiently through all parts of the state.

Following a record harvest that is worth around $8 billion to WA’s economy, the state government is pouring in the money to ensure freight infrastructure improves with the growing demand.

Close consultation with CBH, rail network manager Arc Infrastructure, grower groups and local government has helped determine the projects that will be funded by the package.

The $200 million package will go towards four projects, including $22 million for four rail siding extensions that are already underway and $46 million for seven additional grain rail siding upgrades.

The other two projects that come under this funding include $60 million for upgrades to the Midland main line to allow heavier trains to operate on the line, as well as $72 million for the Southern Wheatbelt region towards recommissioning the Narrogin-Kulin rail line and associated works.

After closing in 2013, the Narrogin-Kulin line will now be worked on to become a useful way of transporting freight through WA regions.

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The WA government says securing this funding means projections are expected to be completed by 2025.

"The WA government is committed to improving region freight infrastructure," WA transport minister Rita Saffioti says.

"The $200 million will ensure our regional freight network continues to keep up with demand now and into the future.

"The recent record harvest shows that we need to continue to invest in road and rail to provide an increasingly efficient transport network."

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