Productivity Commission to review far-reaching transport reforms

The Liberal and Nationals' Government has requested the Productivity Commission undertake a review into national transport reforms to ensure they are delivering national productivity benefits and safety.

Deputy Prime Minister and Nationals' Leader Michael McCormack said economic impacts of COAG reforms to establish the national maritime regulator, the national heavy vehicle regulator and the national rail safety regulator and investigation system are in the request of the Commission.

“With many COAG transport reforms in place and operating for a number of years, now is the time to examine whether they are working in a way which boosts productivity and promotes safety,” Mr McCormack said.

“These reforms—which established a national regulatory system—were designed to provide productivity gains for the economy and reduce the compliance burden on the transport industry by cutting duplication and multiple fees.

“By making sure the reforms are working as they were designed to, we can continue to support the transport industry to create jobs and opportunities for Australians into the future and keep goods moving around the country efficiently and safely.

“It will also help us shape a sensible approach to future regulation which helps truckies, train drivers and transport companies do what they do best while making sure safety remains the top priority.”

“The Liberals and Nationals are investing to help Australia meet the growing freight task, both through better and safer roads and transformational projects such as the Inland Rail and Western Sydney Airport.

“Given the increased focus on the key role freight plays in supporting Australia's living standards, I have requested the Productivity Commission undertake a comprehensive review of the COAG transport reforms, and provide recommendations on these and other transport reforms into the future.”

The Commission is due to report to Government within 12 months of commencement. The Commission will undertake broad public consultation, and invite public submissions.

More information on the inquiry is available at www.pc.gov.au.