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Future Freight Networks : Yearbook 2016
40 ALC EVENTS ALC/DEPARTMENT OF INFRASTRUCTURE AND REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT DIALOGUE ALC’s annual dialogue with the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development provides ALC Members with an opportunity to discuss with the Department the government’s policy agenda, and, importantly, to provide feedback and perspectives directly from a range of sectors within Australia’s transport industry. The structure for 2015 was based on three elements: • integrated ports and freight initiatives, including freight on rail and the development of intermodal terminals • discussion of Infrastructure Australia • practical benefits of the government’s deregulation agenda. The Secretary of the Department, Mike Mrdak, reinforced that governments are finding it increasingly difficult to fund major infrastructure projects. This is likely to remain so for the foreseeable future. Mrdak said ALC needs to continue to encourage all governments on the need for less focus on iconic projects, and more on which project or reform will lead to improved efficiency and productivity outcomes. For example, bridge strengthening, micro-economic reform and addressing last-mile issues. The Department estimated that the financial cost of regulation within the portfolio (across all modes) is approximately $1 billion, and that the government is committed to working with industry to identify and repeal unnecessary and costly regulation. ALC Members stressed the need for: • governments to improve how they cooperate and share information on the issue of heavy vehicle access and permits • the commencement of trials of High Productivity Vehicles on the Hume Highway • greater connectivity between land-use planning and transport planning to ensure that key freight routes are not adversely impacted upon by residential development • greater policy focus on achieving an integrated supply chain, rather than on a ‘mode-by-mode’ basis. LOGISTICS INDUSTRY PARLIAMENTARY DINNER More than 120 people, including ministers, members, senators and industry representatives, attended the Australian Logistics Industry Parliamentary Event to highlight the economic importance of the Inland Rail project. In his welcome speech, then ALC Chairman Don Telford told guests that building the Inland Rail line is a huge opportunity for Australia, and that rail simply has to make a greater contribution to meet Australia’s future freight task. He said getting more freight onto rail would reduce pressure on our road infrastructure and improve the global competiveness of our exporters. It would also create new jobs, and transform our supply chains for generations to come. David Irwin, Director of Pacific National, reiterated industry’s strong support for Inland Rail, and spoke about some of the economic benefits of linking Brisbane and Melbourne with a dedicated rail freight line. ALC was also pleased to launch a new video on Inland Rail, which outlines how the project will stimulate supply chain efficiency, and encourages all sides of politics to get behind this important transformative project. Lyn O’Connell, Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development Michael Kilgariff, ALC Managing Director