PORT of Brisbane chief executive Roy Cummins has welcomed the release of the ‘SEQ City Deal Proposition’, a concept developed by the Queensland government and SEQ Council of Mayors.
The concept includes “supercharging the SEQ Trade and Enterprise Spine” by connecting the Port of Brisbane with Inland Rail.
While plans for most of Inland Rail are clear, there is a sticking point over how to get freight from the end-point at Acacia Ridge in the western suburbs and the port.
The new plan does not resolve these challenges, but indicates the importance of doing so.
Mr Cummins said connecting the Port of Brisbane to Inland Rail via a Port Connection was crucial.
“We can supercharge our supply chain network while also transferring containerised freight from road to rail, potentially taking millions of trucks off our roads,” Mr Cummins said.
“That means less traffic congestion, safer roads, less pollution, and a lower cost supply chain network. Put simply, a dedicated freight rail connection to the Port of Brisbane could be an economic, social and environmental game changer for south-east Queensland, and we stand ready to work with all governments in order to see it delivered.”
Mr Cummins said population and trade growth were intrinsically linked, which is why the Port of Brisbane and the way freight moved around the region was central to the region’s economic future.
“Managing this growth sustainably and responsibly is core to the Port of Brisbane’s mission, which is why we strongly support today’s announcement,” he said.
“We welcome the Federal Government’s comments today indicating its willingness to work with the state and local governments on this important bipartisan initiative. We must all work together to make a Port Connection and the broader SEQ City Deal a reality.”
In a statement this week, Deputy Premier and Treasurer Jackie Trad said the proposal laid the foundation for South East Queensland’s success.
“SEQ is growing and changing and we know that we have to work together to maintain the great lifestyle that makes this community special,” Ms Trad said.
“Modelling by KPMG has shown an SEQ City Deal could stimulate an increase of up to $58bn in our economy by improving the productivity and competitiveness of a region.”