Greater Shepparton City Council is supporting the Rail Freight Alliance (RFA) Save our Tracks Campaign because the completion of the Murray Basin Rail Project (MBRP) to its original scope is imperative for the ongoing prosperity of the regions.
“Furthermore, Council is calling for the Victoria Rail Freight Network to remain in State ownership and control,” Rail Freight Alliance Greater Shepparton Councillor representative, Cr Bruce Giovanetti said.
In June, Minister Allan announced that the MBRP was out of funds and that she would negotiate further funding with the Federal Government. It has been suggested that as part of funding negotiations to complete the MBRP the Victorian Government standard gauge lines would be leased to the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC).
Victorian freight volumes are predicted to more than double by 2050, increasing the mode shift to rail will be vital. “Victoria must retain control of its rail network as part of a moving Victoria’s freight,” said Cr Giovanetti.
Mayor Cr Kim O’Keeffe said “Freight is important for our region, driving economic growth, creating jobs and provide a major boost to the transport industry, agricultural sector and our communities.”
“It is important to the business and prosperity of regional communities that investment in rail projects continues so that our industries are able to compete in very competitive global markets, and move their commodities to the Port efficiently and affordably,” said Cr O’Keeffe.