The Liberal Nationals support moving more freight to rail and a reduction of trucks on roads around the Port of Melbourne but do not support another one of Andrews’ new taxes to pay for it.
Labor’s plan will cost Victorians more to import goods through the Port of Melbourne.
The on-dock rail plan announced is deeply flawed and when you take a close look it’s very easy to derail Labor’s spin train.
The on-dock rail solution will only work to reduce trucks from roads if freight hubs in the North, West and East of the city are better connected via the Port Rail Shuttle Network.
Two projects that received funding from the Port Rail Shuttle scheme in 2018 are yet to even have a sod turned and show no signs of starting soon.
Since Daniel Andrews signed off on the long term lease of the Port of Melbourne wharfage charges for imported containers have increased by 78 per cent, increasing from $67.54 to $120.52.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Ports and Freight, Roma Britnell:
“The Andrews Labor Government must guarantee that this new charge won’t be applied to exporters into the future or be allowed to increase at the whim of the Port of Melbourne consortium.
“The Port of Melbourne is already one of the most expensive ports to do business from in Australia and Andrews’ new tax will push the costs for importers higher and drive up the cost of every day goods for consumers.
“More freight on rail and a reduction of trucks on our roads should be a priority but it shouldn’t be achieved by increasing charges for importers which will inevitably be passed onto Victorian consumers.
“If Labor was better at managing money it wouldn’t need to slug Victorians with yet another new tax.”