“A large number of rail infrastructure projects are underway and in the pipeline. These projects are not delivered overnight; they take years of planning before the green light is given to proceed,” said Mr Allan.
“The industry therefore needs certainty in this process, as a “go / no go” approach dependant on political whim in the electoral cycle is simply not acceptable and can result in an adverse impact on productivity, performance and the availability of a skilled labour force,” he said.
Once established, Infrastructure Victoria will be required to develop a 30 year Infrastructure Strategy detailing short, medium and longer infrastructure needs and priorities. In response, the Government will be required to develop a five-year infrastructure plan outline priorities projects and funding commitments.
“A coherent pipeline will allow the industry to develop effective delivery plans and coordinate resources, including its workforce,” continued Mr Allan.
“The establishment of Infrastructure Victoria, coupled with the Victorian Government’s ten year ‘Rolling Stock Strategy: Trains, Trams, Jobs 2015-2025’, will not only future proof the efficiency and productivity of the state’s rail infrastructure; but also provide greater certainty to local rolling stock manufacturers and suppliers.
“Looking abroad, in Canada for example, the Government has committed as part of its 2013 budget, to maintain funding for at least ten years to the Building Canada Fund.
“Like Governments in Canada and the United States, Australia’s Federal and State governments also need to present at least ten year budgets and estimates of their infrastructure outlays.
“The ARA applauds the Victorian Government on delivering its election promise and also for the further commitment to develop an infrastructure plan, outlining priority projects and funding commitments,” Mr Allan concluded.