4 October 2022
LABOR MUST SUPPORT NATION BUILDING PROJECTS
Billions of dollars in priority road and rail funding are in doubt as Labor’s October Budget looms.
The Coalition’s 10-year infrastructure investment pipeline of $120 billion in this year’s budget included an additional $17.9 billion to priority road and rail projects.
Shadow Minister for Infrastructure Transport and Regional Development, Senator Bridget McKenzie has said there are grave concerns that many vital infrastructure projects that would support jobs, increase the efficiency and capacity of the National freight industry, and get people home sooner and safer are at risk of being axed in the Albanese Government’s Budget.
“Take for example the Melbourne Intermodal Terminals; a project which received $3.1 billion in funding in the Coalition’s Budget and was subsequently called a ‘fake commitment’ by Labor, Senator McKenzie said.
“This so called “fake commitment” would see two new intermodal terminals created thousands of jobs both during construction and in operation, improved network reliability, a reduction in congestion and an improvement travel times as 550 trucks a day will be taken off Melbourne roads.
And what should be most important to Labor, it will reduce the freight network’s overall environmental impact. Sounds more like a fantastic commitment! Yet, Labor has refused to commit to it.”
Senator McKenzie said that since the pandemic, supply chains have been in the spotlight, whether it be an item delayed in transit or a rise in the price of building materials, we now realise the important role supply chains make in keeping Australia moving.
“Investing in the Intermodal Terminals will accommodate end-to-end supply chain efficiency and productivity and assist in further growing Australia’s economy. The Albanese Government must treat a large nation building project like this one as a link in the chain which keeps the Australian economy strong,” Senator McKenzie said.
The transport industry, Victorian councils, and community groups have been urging a shift in freight from roads to rail. Failure to support the Melbourne Intermodals Terminals would be a huge mistake from the Albanese Government.”