Ministers for the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities The Hon Michael McCormack MP Deputy Prime MinisterMinister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie Minister for Regional ServicesMinister for SportMinister for Local Government and Decentralisation The Hon Alan Tudge MP Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population The Hon Sussan Ley MP Assistant Minister for Regional Development and Territories The Hon Andrew Gee MP Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Andrew Broad MP Former Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Scott Buchholz MP Assistant Minister for Roads and Transport The Hon Barnaby Joyce MPFormer Deputy Prime MinisterFormer Minister for Infrastructure and Transport The Hon Dr John McVeigh MPFormer Minister for Regional Development, Territories and Local Government The Hon Keith Pitt MPFormer Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Damian Drum MPFormer Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Senator the Hon Fiona Nash Former Minister for Regional DevelopmentFormer Minister for Local Government and Territories The Hon Darren Chester MP Former Minister for Infrastructure and TransportFormer A/g Minister for Regional DevelopmentFormer A/g Minister for Local Government and Territories The Hon Warren Truss MP Former Deputy Prime Minister Former Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development The Hon Paul Fletcher MP Former Minister for Urban Infrastructure and Cities The Hon Jamie Briggs MP Former Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development

Environmental approvals pave the way for Parkes to Narromine Inland Rail construction

Media Release

MM149/2018

05 September 2018

Joint release with:

Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann

Minister for Finance and the Public Service
Senator for Western Australia

The Hon Melissa Price MP

Minister for the Environment
Federal Member for Durack

The Hon Mark Coulton MP

Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment
Federal Member for Parkes

The Hon Melinda Pavey MP

NSW Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight
State Member for Oxley

The Hon Anthony Roberts MP

NSW Minister for Planning
State Member for Lane Cove

The Australian and New South Wales Governments have given the green light for construction to commence on the Parkes to Narromine section of Inland Rail.

Deputy Prime Minister, Nationals’ Leader and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said Inland Rail will bring jobs and opportunities, improve connectivity and increase freight productivity for businesses and consumers in regional Australia.

“Today is another vital step in making our Inland Rail vision a reality and I am excited for the first section of Inland Rail construction to commence, with $9.3 billion in Federal Government investment,” Mr McCormack said.

“Communities across regional Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland will see the benefit of better access to markets at home and overseas, as well as ensuring Australia meets the challenge of our freight task which is set to double.”

Minister for Finance and the Public Service Mathias Cormann said Inland Rail will be a corridor of commerce for communities along the Eastern Seaboard.

“Through this investment, the Australian Government is delivering on its commitment to increase freight productivity, ease road congestion and streamline supply chains for businesses and consumers,” Senator Cormann said.

Minister for the Environment Melissa Price said final approval for these works under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act was provided by the Department of the Environment and Energy this week.

“The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) can start its upgrade to the 106 kilometres of track between these two important regional service centres. This will bring jobs and economic opportunity to the region,” Ms Price said.

Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton said he was pleased to see regional Australians are ready for Inland Rail.

“Inland Rail was what made me get off the tractor and put my hand up for Parliament—this is going to be a transformational investment in communities throughout Western NSW,” Mr Coulton said.

“Whether it’s seeing firsthand the opportunities for greater market access as Australia’s Assistant Trade Minister or understanding the passion local farmers and small businesses have for new jobs and  opportunities in Western NSW, this is an exciting project.”

NSW Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey welcomed the next step toward making the Parkes to Narromine section a reality.

“The capacity to move freight efficiently and reliably is the single most important factor in ensuring the continued health of our domestic economy, and in growing and maintaining economic competitiveness,” Mrs Pavey said.

NSW Minister for Planning and Housing Anthony Roberts said approval for these works under the NSW Environmental Planning and Assessment Act was provided by the New South Wales Department of Planning and Environment previously.

“I’m pleased to see both Governments give the green light for the first Inland Rail project to begin,” Mr Roberts said.

“Our freight network supports economic growth in New South Wales, however the existing freight rail line is constrained as it travels through the congested Sydney network, bypassing some of the state’s most productive agricultural regions.”

The ARTC has been appointed by the Australian Government to deliver Inland Rail in partnership with the private sector.

More information about the Inland Rail project is available at infrastructure.gov.au/rail/inland/ and epbcnotices.environment.gov.au/publicnoticesreferrals/.