The Federal Government’s announcement of a Productivity Commission (PC) review of COAG transport reforms since 2009, according to the Australian Logistics Council (ALC), is a valuable opportunity to further boost the efficiency and safety of freight movement in Australia.
With increasing demand for Australian export goods and local population growth continues to grow the freight task, Kirk Coningham, ALC CEO, says it is critical to ensure the regulatory frameworks around freight transport are delivering the best possible outcomes for the sector and for consumers.
“ALC research has previously shown a 1 per cent increase in supply chain efficiency is worth $2 billion to the economy. Accordingly, we must take every opportunity to ensure our regulatory settings are enabling efficiency improvements,” he said.
“In 2011, a COAG agreement reduced the number of national transport regulators from 23 down to three, in a move that has undoubtedly helped to reduced administrative complexities for freight logistics operators,” Coningham said.
“Freight does not stop at state borders. The continued efficiency and safety of freight movement requires a regulatory framework that allows freight logistics professionals to get on with the job without being burdened by duplication and needless costs.”
“With the National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy set to be finalised and released this year, this is the perfect time for the Productivity Commission to review transport reforms.”
According to Coningham, the ALC sees an opportunity to boost productivity through its regulatory frameworks and in particular a scope for the remit of the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator (ONRSR) to be expanded to include a productivity remit.
"This would be consistent with the approach of the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR),” he said.
“With this week’s Federal Budget having made significant investments in freight infrastructure and Australia’s capacity to collect and disseminate freight data, today’s announcement of a PC review is especially timely.”
“ALC looks forward to playing an active role in the review process, ensuring it ultimately delivers the right outcomes for the freight logistics industry and Australian consumers.”