New South Wales Minister for Transport, Jo Haylen, has announced a policy reform program to address key issues facing the state’s freight industry.
The Freight Reform Program will deliver prioritised and practical policy reform focused on the key current and emerging challenges facing the NSW freight network.
It will also look to identify short, medium and long-term actions for Government to support the ongoing improvement of freight transport across NSW.
The policy reform will focus on the different parts of the supply chain, with ports, rail, road and intermodal facilities all considered as part of a coordinated supply chain to determine the right policy framework to optimise safety, sustainability and productivity.
According to Haylen, NSW’s freight network is still too disjointed and inefficient, with policy and infrastructure bottlenecks right across the supply chain.
“Safe, sustainable, and productive freight transport is critical to support the people, businesses and industries of NSW,” she said.
“A more productive freight sector can deliver reduced costs for businesses and lower retail prices for ordinary people right across NSW.”
The program will be led by Transport for NSW under the leadership of an Independent Advisory Panel of experts, all who have deep experience in the freight and logistics sector.
The panel, consisting of Dr Kerry Schott, Lucio Di Bartolomeo and Dr Hermione Parsons, will report to Haylen who will assist in the development of a new freight strategy.
“The appointment of the Independent Advisory Panel will work with my department and provide independent and expert advice on the Program,” Haylen said.
“I have confidence that with their diverse expertise in their fields, the Panel is well placed to lead us through this significant reform in freight transport policy.”
Immediate priorities for the panel will include consideration of the determination of compensation to be paid by the Port of Newcastle for increasing container operations as part of NSW port policy.
The panel will also review and consult with industry on the recommendations made by Ed Willett’s review of the port regulatory framework and the regulation of the movement of containers at Port Botany.
Willet is the Independent Reviewer for the Ports and Maritime Administration Act 1995 and Port Botany Landside Improvement Strategy Review.
There will be comprehensive stakeholder consultation undertaken as part of the program.
It is intended that the first phase will follow release of a Discussion Paper and is expected to occur in in the first quarter of next year.