Feb 13, 2009

Call for submissions to the NSW Grain Freight Review

Call for submissions to the NSW Grain Freight Review

MEDIA RELEASE

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

February 13 2009

The Rudd Labor Government’s plans to create a more reliable and efficient grain transport network in NSW have taken another step forward with a call for submissions into the NSW Grain Freight Review.

Transport and Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese and Agriculture Minister, Tony Burke said the Government is keen to hear from grain producers and the transport industry.

The $3 million review is part of a key election commitment to look at grain freight in rural and regional NSW.

Submissions are welcome on issues including:

  • changes in production patterns and domestic and export markets for grain;
  • enhancing the efficiency of grain transport, storage and handling, and
  • implications for regional communities and the environment.

Mr Albanese said infrastructure was a critical part of securing economic growth in the future and supporting jobs.

“The Government recognises the importance of investing in infrastructure now to support important farming industries, including the grain sector,” Mr Albanese said.

Mr Burke said the NSW grains industry was a critical part of the national economy.

“A majority of Australia’s wheat is exported to important markets such as Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and Sudan,” Mr Burke said.

“We have already delivered a major economic reform in overhauling the wheat export marketing system to create new opportunities for growers.

“Now we are looking at long-term infrastructure needs with this review.”

All submissions for the Grain Freight Review will be considered by the review chair, who will report to the Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government and the NSW Minister for Transport at the end of May 2009.

The Call for Submissions paper is available from the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government’s website (www.infrastructure.gov.au) or by phoning the Review Secretariat on 1800 044 938.

The closing date for submissions is Tuesday 17 March 2009.