Rail builds platform for economic recovery

 Rail builds platform for economic recovery

Transport Minister Michael Wood and State-Owned Enterprises Minister Dr David Clark today released the Government’s long term vision for a sustainable rail network that supports our economic recovery.

New Zealand Rail Plan lays out how the Government is building a resilient, reliable and safe network, as well as the indicative investments over the next decade.

Michael Wood said rail is key to keeping New Zealand moving and is supporting our economic recovery.

“The disruptions to the supply chain due to COVID have shown how important it is to have a reliable rail network to keep freight flowing, which keeps our economy moving. The Rail Plan shows how we’re getting rail back on track after the former government let it slide into managed decline.

“Rail is worth up to $2.1 billion to our economy every year and reduces emissions and congestion. Annually it prevents 2.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions and 26 million car trips in Auckland and Wellington,” Michael Wood said.

David Clark said investing in infrastructure like rail creates jobs, which is part of the Government’s COVID economic plan.

“KiwiRail’s work renewing the Northland Rail line supported more than 560 jobs, and work to replace the existing maintenance building at Hillside will support around 100 more.

“Our investments like the new Hamilton to Auckland service Te Huia meant 40 new staff and apprentices have been taken on at Hutt Workshops. We’re building a sustainable 21st century rail network and supporting jobs,” David Clark said.

Media contacts:

Minister Wood – Tom James 027 308 6010

Minister Clark – Sam Farrell 021 844 506

Notes to editor:

  • The Rail Plan sets out two strategic investment priorities for rail:
    • Investing in the national rail network to restore rail freight and provide a platform for future investment for growth
    • Investing in metropolitan rail to support growth and productivity in our largest cities
  • The Rail Plan also outlines the new planning and funding framework for rail where KiwiRail’s tracks and associated network infrastructure will be funded under the Land Transport Management Act 2003, alongside coastal shipping, walking and cycling infrastructure, roads and public transport.
  • Changes to the Land Transport Management Act 2003 have been enacted by the Land Transport (Rail) Legislation Act 2020. These changes establish the statutory requirements for the new planning and funding regime for the rail network. 
  • The Crown and track users will contribute to existing National Land Transport Fund revenue to fund the rail network.

Tom James |Press Secretary (he/him)

Office of Hon. Michael Wood

Minister of Transport

Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety

Deputy Leader of the HouseMobile: +64 27 308 6010

Email tom.james@parliament.govt.nz

Authorised by Jacinda Ardern MP, Parliament Buildings, Wellington

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