The Australasian Railway Association (ARA) has congratulated the incoming Labor Federal Government on their election this week.
ARA Chief Executive Officer Caroline Wilkie said the rail industry looked forward to working with the incoming Government on advancing a strong rail industry to support Australia’s growth and prosperity.
“The rail industry is leading a significant program of work to meet our future infrastructure needs and ensure our sustainable development,” Ms Wilkie said.
“We look forward to working with the incoming Government to support a strong national focus for the rail industry.”
Ms Wilkie said the Labor Government’s National Rail Manufacturing Plan and National Reconstruction Fund would support the development of increased capability in the Australia rail supply chain.
“Policies that support a strong Australian rail manufacturing sector will ultimately lead to better deals for governments and create more jobs in the process,” Ms Wilkie said.
More than 4000 jobs are created by rollingstock manufacturers and repair in Australia, with many of those located in regional centres.
The $2.4 billion sector has key employment bases in Cardiff and Broadmeadow in NSW; Dandenong, Ballarat, and Newport in Victoria; Maryborough in Queensland; and East Perth in WA.
Ms Wilkie said the Labor Government’s commitment to establish a national infrastructure agenda and framework, and its strong commitment to faster rail, would maximise the benefits of rail investment in the future.
“A strong national approach to infrastructure development will assist industry in driving innovation, building workforce capability and delivering improved outcomes for the economy,” Ms Wilkie said.
“We look forward to engaging with Government to support a national focus that ensures new projects best meet community needs and future demand.”
The ARA also looked forward to working with Government as it implements its sustainability agenda.
“Greater use of rail delivers significant sustainability benefits to the community and will be a key part of our journey to net-zero,” Ms Wilkie said.
“There is a real opportunity to harness the benefits of new rail projects underway to innovate, drive efficiency and create more sustainable outcomes for years to come.”
The ARA would also work closely with Government to advance skills development initiatives to help address the current skills crisis to support rewarding, long term careers in the cities and regions.