FEDERAL Labor has pledged $50m to complete the stalled Maldon-Dombarton rail link should it be elected to office.

The rail link was partially built in the 1980s, but with a growing freight task predicted for Port Kembla, the concept is seen as a way of handling the movement of goods between the Illawarra and western Sydney.

In a joint announcement headed by infrastructure spokesman Anthony Albanese, Labor said the Maldon-Dombarton rail link would “boost productivity and promote growth in the Illawarra region”.

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Federal Labor also called on the NSW government to match the commitment.

“Completing the Maldon-Dombarton rail project, which is part-built, would provide a 35km rail link between Port Kembla and south-west Sydney,” the statement read.

Labor argues something must be done to ensure the ongoing freight viability of the Illawarra region.

“The NSW government’s Maldon-Dombarton Rail Link Final Business Case detailed a damning assessment of the region’s current infrastructure capability,” the Labor statement read.

“It made clear that freight train paths on the Illawarra Line will be cut dramatically from 60 to just eight paths per day. By 2031, freight operations could be confined solely to “night time only”.

According to Labor, connecting the line from the port through to the Main South Line at Picton would be a boon for freight logistics in Illawarra and south-western Sydney.

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