First industry panel meeting drives renewed ambition for freight strategy

The newly established Freight Industry Reference Panel held its first meeting, kick-starting its vital work to drive delivery of the National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy.

Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz emphasised the key role of the panel in keeping government and industry delivery of the transformative strategy on track.

“Our COVID-19 response has shown us how quickly and effectively we can improve our freight systems when all levels of government and industry work together towards a common purpose,” Assistant Minister Buchholz said.

“That’s exactly what the National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy is about, as it lays out a 20-year plan showing how governments and industry will work together to lift our freight networks’ performance.

“Having been involved in the freight industry for many years, I know just how vital an efficient freight supply chain is to the lives of all Australians as it connects hard-working local businesses to markets to underpin jobs, the national economy and our future prosperity. 

“The strategy is important now more than ever to support this critical industry and indeed the entire nation by driving real improvements to Australia’s freight productivity, because that is good for jobs and the economy.

“The panel has an important role driving ambition for the strategy and acting as a vital conduit for industry views and providing independent advice on progress made.

“I look forward to seeing the panel’s work progress as we continue working hard to implement this critical strategy to achieve better outcomes for our national freight supply chain.”

Panel Chair John Fullerton said the panel was thrilled to begin working on this critical initiative and was looking forward to working with and hearing from all sectors of the freight industry on the delivery of the strategy.

“As we act to respond to the ongoing impacts of COVID-19, we also need to maintain our focus on meeting our long-term freight challenges to support a bigger and more productive Australia and to secure a prosperous future for this critical industry,” Mr Fullerton said.

“Big or small, we know industry stakeholders of all levels remain strongly committed and want to see progress on the strategy as quickly as possible.

“That’s why we’ll be working hard to ramp-up momentum on the strategy, with each of the panel members bringing a depth of knowledge and a range of experiences from across all freight modes and supply chains. 

“As such, our advice to government will present a holistic, cross-network, multi-modal view and I look forward to working with these members on this critical goal.”

The panel will provide independent advice to the Transport and Infrastructure Ministers on the delivery of the strategy’s goals during the annual reporting cycle.

More information about the strategy and the panel can be found at: https://www.freightaustralia.gov.au/what-is-the-strategy/freight-industry-reference-panel

Media contact: 

Assistant Minister Buchholz – Scott O’Connell 0413 424 384