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PORTS Australia has backed the work being done by Transport of NSW in developing a strategic business case for a Freight Community System and urges the federal government to take the lead in exploring its potential.

The Freight Community System would be a neutral and open digitised platform enabling freight supply chain participants to rapidly and securely exchange information to optimise, automate and manage logistics processes, by providing visibility of data across freight supply chains.

Ports Australia has thrown its support behind those who have already conducted research in this space and congratulated their “forward-thinking”, namely the Port of Brisbane. It also commended the Freight and Logistics Council of Western Australia for commencing a state-based project to improve freight data tracking.

Ports Australia has recommended Transport for NSW liaise with the Port of Brisbane and utilise the knowledge it has built, as well as reach out to Ports Australia who can facilitate industry feedback via the expertise of the Logistics Working Group.

Ports Australia’s CEO, Mike Gallacher said, “It is now time for the federal government to get involved and begin leading this charge.

“The purpose of Freight Community Systems will be contradicted if each state and territory across Australia has a separate approach.”

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Ports Australia has therefore recommended to Transport for NSW that a national approach to this new direction is adopted and championed by the Australian Government Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Economics and Communication in conjunction with state and territory jurisdictions.

“It’s exciting to imagine one system as home to all exchanges of data across the supply chain… it seems a simple idea but the potential benefits like improved urban planning, reduced freight transit times, and reduced supply chain disruption are enticing,” Mr Gallacher said.

Ports Australia’s policy and operations director, Margaret Barbouttis said, “Supply chains are webs of inter-connected moving parts which are making constant exchanges of information resulting in the efficiency our society reaps every day.

“The means behind those exchanges are complex and often unique across the supply chain, meaning the opportunity to develop a secure, standardised system is an exciting one for all involved.”

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