The Australian Government should invest an extra $5 billion over ten years to fix freight roads, dangerous level crossings and to build more rest areas for truck drivers, the ATA’s 2024-25 pre-budget submission says.
The submission argues that Australia must also invest in developing a defined all-weather network, with a supporting secondary network pre-approved for use, in the wake of road network closures due to fires, floods and crashes.
To achieve this, the Australian Government should assume responsibility for major freight roads through the national highways program. This should include funding and operational responsibilities, including granting access approvals for heavy vehicles.
The submission also argues that the Government should—
- re-establish temporary full expensing for trucks and trailers and fund the states to reform stamp duty to encourage businesses to buy new, safer vehicles
- support productivity and innovation by modifying the upcoming closing loopholes bill to ban the Fair Work Commission from mandating minimum freight rates
- redesignate truck driving as skill level 3 under the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) to enable eligible migrants to access truck driving work in Australia, provided they can meet Australia’s strict licensing requirements.