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Future Freight Networks : Yearbook 2017
19 FUTURE FREIGHT NETWORKS 2017 COMPANY PROFILE Y COMPANY PROFILE Of course, none of these projects could succeed without significant input from network users and a range of other government agencies. Fixing Country Roads (FCR) is another collaborative program channelling record amounts of funding to local councils for targeted infrastructure projects. FCR builds better road links in order to reduce costs for businesses. It funds projects that improve connections between local and regional roads to state highways and key freight hubs. We’re talking about the silos, saleyards, rail heads, supermarket distribution centres, industrial parks and depots that form the heart of our network. FCR is a $500-million commitment by the New South Wales Government. The first round provided $42.85 million for 77 projects, the total value of which grew to $95 million after extra contributions from local councils, the Commonwealth and industry. In June 2016, we announced another $50 million of funding for 64 projects. FCR is a sister program to fund rail infrastructure enhancements that eliminate connectivity constraints. It’s another practical way that we’re working with industry to lower the cost to market for regional businesses. Sidings, passing loops, the reopening of non-operational sections and network enhancements allowing the use of faster, longer and heavier trains are eligible for application to the program, and applications will be open to asset managers and owners. Fixing Country Rail is underpinned by a $400-million boost under Rebuilding NSW. Pilot projects worth up to $15 million have been announced, and the full first round is now open. I mentioned NSFC’s role in taking heavy vehicles off our roads. Pipelines offer a solution for the efficient, safe and cost-effective transportation of fuels. Fewer fuel tankers on the road improves safety and cuts congestion while lowering fuel distribution costs and improving supply chain productivity. The New South Wales Government is working on plans to meet future fuel demand in areas located long distances from our ports, into which most of New South Wales’s fuel is imported. We are in the early stages of planning to identify and protect two pipeline corridors in New South Wales. It’s not only about infrastructure. The regulatory framework in which we all operate should create a level playing field and make it easier to do business. Small adjustments can make big differences and recent changes to the Standard for Health Assessment of Marine Pilots are a good example. The standard was introduced in 2009, and it is revised every five years. The latest version reflects current medical knowledge and an understanding of how specific health conditions can impact on safe working performance. Navigating some of the world’s largest ships safely in and out of New South Wales’s ports is a complex task. Marine pilots are safety-critical workers whose knowledge and skills safeguard the environment and our port infrastructure. The revised standard is the result of extensive research and input from a wide range of stakeholders, including the Port Authority of New South Wales, New South Wales Marine Pilots, Sydney Pilots Service and the Australian Maritime Officers Union. Collaboration is key to all of these pieces of the freight task, and although it’s immensely satisfying to see them moving into place, there’s much more to be done. 501617E_TRANSPORT NSW I 2318.indd 25 18/05/2017 9:35 AM