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NSW businesses want more invested in States road network: survey

The New South Wales Government must invest more in key arterial roads or risk pushing up congestion levels, according to

The New South Wales Government must invest more in key arterial roads or risk pushing up congestion levels, according to the findings of an NRMA survey.

In its BusinessWise 2020 survey, the motoring and insurance body found the majority of the 560 NRMA BusinessWise members quizzed saw the construction of major routes and road links as essential to cutting travel times.

Of those surveyed, 72 percent called for the construction of the M4 extension, while 76 percent supported the M2 to F3 link.

The majority of businesses surveyed say completing these projects will reduce the amount of time their vehicles will spend in traffic, with about one-quarter of respondents expecting a saving of 20 to 30 minutes for each vehicle in their fleet.

NRMA Director Gary Punch says the Government needs to heed the findings of the survey and start investing in key routes.

“Our leaders are talking about the nation’s vision for 2020 yet in Sydney today many of our BusinessWise members are sending their fleets out on roads that have barely improved since 1920,” he says.

Businesses also saw the need to expand the powers of petrol commissioner Pat Walker as a way of ensuring they are not paying excessive amounts for fuel.

According to the survey, 94 percent of businesses want the commissioner to order petrol companies to adjust their prices when found to be inflating their profit margins, 88 percent want fines dished out, while 72 percent want Walker to force oil companies to drop their prices to compensate motorists.

By enforcing these measures, Punch says the money businesses save can then be invested in hiring more staff and growing their business.

“If the commissioner can succeed in dropping prices by about five to seven cents many of our BusinessWise members believe they would [sic] enjoy savings of at least 10 percent on their transport costs,” he says.

The survey also found strong support for research and development into alternative fuels as a means of reducing running costs, with most businesses saying LPG, electricity, ethanol and hydrogen are viable fuels for their fleets.

“Businesses are watching their profit margins get eaten away by rising petrol costs. They’re sick of it,” Punch says.

“More than three-quarters are absorbing the additional cost rather than passing it on to their customers, and it is hurting.”

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