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Prime Mover Magazine

Government Program pushes freight network productivity

The heavy vehicle industry and local governments have until 15 February to submit proposals for the Government’s second intake of the Trials Business Case Program.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack reminded stakeholders today of the looming deadline as the Government sought to increase productivity and efficiencies on local freight routes.

Industry friendly measures in which operating restrictions like those of curfews were relaxed, greater access was permitted and road conditions were improved were agreed as crucial next steps in the process.

McCormack said road users, businesses and other stakeholders with first-hand experience and knowledge of freight networks are at the centre of the planning process and their continued input was an important way of delivering the best outcomes.

“Road freight is the engine of our economy and roads are our most valuable infrastructure asset,” he said.

“The Australian Government is investing in a record $75 billion 10-year infrastructure plan throughout the nation with a focus on road safety and road efficiency improvements, getting people home sooner and safer,” said McCormack.

“That’s why we want to work closely with our vital industry bodies, operators and users, as well as our vast and experienced local governments, to develop business cases investigating the potential benefits of heavy vehicle charging trials for industry.”

“Whether you’re a heavy vehicle operator, represent a Local Government or work for an industry peak body, we want to hear from you.”

It was an unique opportunity, according to McCormack, for allowing industry and government to collaborate on improving heavy vehicle access while reducing operating costs for users.

He said the Program was developed to provide the heavy vehicle industry with the option to participate in location-specific heavy vehicle charging trials.

The type and level of a charge for a location-specific heavy vehicle charging trial will, according to McCormack, depend on the findings from a business case and industry feedback.

Any industry participation in a trial will be voluntary.

Proposals for the second intake of the Australian Government’s Trials Business Case Program must be submitted by 15 February 2019.

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