In her first appearance at a trucking industry event, Trucking Australia 23, as the Minister responsible for the trucking industry, Catherine King, Federal Minister of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government offered the new government perspective on the issues facing our industry.
“We know that trucking is one of Australia’s essential industries, delivering day and night in the sunlight and rain, on public holidays, and on weekends, through droughts, floods and pandemics from cities to the regions, to remote parts of Australia. everywhere, every day, Australia is relying on you,” said King. “A major part of my ministerial role is making trucks and trucking more efficient and our supply chains more productive.
“Road Transport is a major contributor to our economy, some $1.1 billion in the 12 months to June 2022. The growth rate has been growing each and every year. In 2020, it was around $223 billion tonne kilometres of domestic road freight and that is forecast to rise to $337 billion by 2040.”
According to King, delivering the necessary infrastructure is exactly what the government’s task is at the moment. The Minister went on to list a number of major infrastructure projects happening around the states.She suggests they will unlock economic growth and increase the productivity and safety of the nation’s roads, reduce time in transit and transport costs leading to cheaper goods for consumers.
“Truck drivers in Australia deserve access to decent facilities when they need them, just like every single other worker in the country,” said King. “That’s why last year, we committed an additional $80 million to support new and upgraded rest areas. The program steering committee is chaired by Senator Glenn Sterle and featuring industry representatives, including five active drivers.
“For the first time in a long time this steering committee will actually have a voice in shaping the projects that are funded through this initiative. Of course, these kinds of investments aren’t cheap, and in the current economic environment, that is the elephant in the room. The reality is that road upgrades cost money.
“Governments across Australia are planning to spend to spend around $33 billion in roads in the 23/24 year. The total cost recovery from operators will raise $3.8 billion in the next 12 months with roughly 60 per cent of that coming from the freight user charge.”
Government Perspective on the Issues Facing Our Industry appeared first on Power Torque.