The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) supports a planned approach to infrastructure provision that includes economic analysis and appropriate treatment of different transport modes. To foster economic growth and international competitiveness infrastructure that efficiency moves road and rail freight is necessary; seeking productivity gains should be a goal of any freight strategy.
The ATA is broadly supportive of a National Land Freight Strategy (NLFS), although raises some caution with the discussion in the draft strategy and proposed actions. The current situation and existing constraints across modes is not explained accurately; which will lead to ineffective policy development. How a NLFS will actually improve infrastructure provision needs to be clearly outlined, seeking other side benefits are secondary.
Potential strategies are not well defined, for example with the last mile issue, PBS and capacity constraints in rail freight. There are a number of misleading or assumptive statements, including heavy vehicle charging reform. A number of large projects are mentioned, including a national road improvement regime and a proposed inland rail network, but without any detail. Information around projects must be included before it can be considered an integral part of a NLFS.