INLAND Rail will help open up regional areas to international trade, Australian Rail Track Corporation manager for marketing and business development Glen Richmond says.

Speaking to the gathering, Mr Richmond said rail had also suffered from a perception problem in recent decades.

“I think the rail industry over the years has suffered a little bit from the fact that it has been seen as fairly heavy, clunky and slow,” he said.

“But services that rely on rail lines are say that it is actually very good.”

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Mr Richmond said he had spoken with a large Australian retailer who currently used no rail at all, but was now considering building freight warehouses at places like Parkes and Wagga Wagga in New South Wales.

“So they’re looking at areas like Parkes and Wagga Wagga. With Inland Rail they will be able to build warehouses, they will be able to bring freight in from Asia and re-pack for destination,” he said.

Mr Richmond said more freight on rail would bring benefits for all.

“We want to talk to all of those people, local, state and federal government agencies… bring everyone together to look at what the opportunities are to get more freight on rail,” he said.

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