The Ports Report

An Expert's View about International Transport Agreements in Australia

Posted on: 19 Apr 2010

Ian Murray busts the myth that ports are just congested infrastructure points falling by the wayside.

EXPORt opinion thE PORts REPORt ian Murray busts the myth that ports are just congested infrastructure points falling by the wayside. t lunch recently, a friend of mine part of Sydney. More importantly, the link, due for completion at the end of the who was once in exporting said area is connected by a dedicated freight year, will provide uninterrupted rail access A to me: ?What?s going on at our line to Port Botany, which will provide a to the Port of Melbourne for trains of up ports, all I read about is more and more competitive alternative to road transport. In to 1,500 metres without impacting roads. delays, more and more trucks, isn?t it time fact, when operational, the objective is to The channel project will increase vessel the government got their act together and move 40 percent of freight by rail compared accessibility to the port from an 11.6-metre spent some money on infrastructure?? I to 20 percent currently. draft to a 14-metre draft to allow for the thought for a moment before answering and The benefits that will be derived from the world?s new fleet of container ships. politely suggested he have a look at a few Intermodal Logistics Centre at Enfield, from Port of Brisbane too is spending on websites, particularly Sydney, Melbourne a trade point of view and for the public in infrastructure with their Berth 11 planned and Brisbane Ports, where huge investments general, are significant. It?s ideally are being made in infrastructure and ways positioned, close to the major There isn?t a person of getting more freight away from trucks ?catchment? areas where a large alive who doesn?t and onto rail. At the same time, I suggested number of Australia?s importers that he look at sites for other ports around and exporters are located; it has know of Australia?s Australia as he may be surprised at what good access to main trucking he finds in terms of money being spent routes, and when operational, it is infrastructure woes on a range of things to better support our forecast to provide up to 850 direct importers and exporters. and indirect jobs. And if rail objectives are to be operational by 2012, and Berth 12 Sydney Ports is probably not a bad reached, it will reduce the number of trucks ready by 2014. place to start. It is Australia?s second largest on the road. Nobody can argue about the There isn?t a person alive who doesn?t container port, and trade is expected to benefits of that. know of Australia?s infrastructure woes: double by 2020. It?s also located in a very Sadly, these sorts of massive projects take we see them every day. But to say nothing congested part of Sydney. Two massive time. The intermodal terminal is forecast is happening is simply untrue as there projects are underway that, when finished, to be operational by 2011 and the port are some good things happening and will transform the way freight is handled expansion a year later. With 5?7 percent even better things planned. Creating in Sydney. The first is the expansion of growth in trade forecasts over the next 20 Infrastructure Australia is a move in the Port Botany. This expansion will see the years, it can?t come too soon, but in fairness right direction and putting infrastructure development of 60 hectares with five new the cost is high and planning for this sort in with the transport portfolio nationally shipping berths and 1,850 metres of new of undertaking is enormous. And we live is also good. Some people would argue wharves, a $1 billion project. in a democracy, where all interests must for a national ports strategy, others for a I can hear my friend saying, ?Why would be canvassed. competitive regime. From my perspective, anyone expand a port that?s located right The original question was aimed competition is good because it keeps prices in the heart of busy Botany?? And that?s squarely at Sydney, but without doubt down and makes the ports proactive. If that a fair question. But when you look at the applies to other major cities in Australia. helps our exporters, it gets my vote. interface between the port development We all have congestion and we all have and the massive intermodal logistics centre growth in road movements. Australia?s ? IAN MURRAY planned for Enfield, you can quickly see the busiest port, the Port of Melbourne, is also Executive Director sense in it. Enfield is a huge undertaking, going through substantial development Australian Institute of Export and I find it quite exciting. It?s located on a with the Dynon Port Rail Link and Channel 60-hectare disused site in a major industrial Deepening projects well underway. The rail 10 april.09
Posted: 19 April 2010

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