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Future Freight Networks : Yearbook 2013
14 COMPANY PROFILE Acompetitive, safe and reliable rail network between our major cities, and especially along our nation's eastern seaboard, is key to reducing the impact of congestion on our roads, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and building national productivity, ARTC's CEO John Fullerton says. 'In many ways, the performance of Australia's rail networks, both freight and passenger, will shape the future of Australia as a liveable and productive nation. 'Following a period of extensive investment into the interstate rail network, the time for Australian businesses seeking to take advantage of a competitive and socially responsible mode of transport for their freight is now,' says Mr Fullerton. A number of factors have aligned to help drive rail toward becoming this nation's preferred land-freight mode for much of the land transport task: • Key rail infrastructure has been upgraded. • Multiple network access agreements have been streamlined into a 'one-stop-shop' with ARTC. • Consistent transport and freight policy making is being delivered at both state and federal government level. • Rail operators understand the needs of customers, in what is a mature and competitive market. 'It's evident that rail is a mode that's right for Australia, and the mode of choice for socially responsible brands, and that our industry is on the precipice of gaining signi cant market share,' Fullerton says. 'We've transformed the Melbourne to Brisbane corridor, we've broken the back of the Sydney peak-hour curfew through the Southern Sydney Freight Line, and transit times are shorter and more reliable -- these can only be signi cant incentives for Australian businesses to start thinking rail.' Additionally, ARTC has been working closely with the New South Wales and Commonwealth Governments over several years to scope up the $1.1 billion Northern Sydney Freight Corridor Program. When completed in 2016, this program will provide a 50 per cent increase in freight track capacity -- suf cient to support growth on rail for many years to come. And, while curfew restrictions will not have been eliminated entirely, the overall impact will be to reduce the curfew into Sydney by 50 per cent to four hours per day. 'These developments are important, and while it's been a slow but steady journey so far, they will prove to be a step change for rail in this country, which can only be a step up for Australian business productivity,' Fullerton says. 'From port to port, coast to coast and capital to capital, I rmly believe one of the most fundamental drivers to a future prosperous Australia will be how our interstate rail networks and associated supply chains integrate and perform.' A step change for rail, a step up for the nation