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New Zealand Transport Strategy Released

New Zealand Transport Strategy Released

Transport Minister Paul Swain today released the New Zealand Transport Strategy – a document which will guide government decision-making on transport.

The strategy has been developed in partnership with the Greens.

The NZTS defines the government’s vision for transport: “By 2010, New Zealand will have an affordable, integrated, safe, responsive and sustainable transport system.

“The strategy aims to ensure that transport can contribute to the government’s objective to return New Zealand’s per capita income to the top half of the OECD, while also improving our communities and environment,” said Mr Swain.

“To this end it has five main objectives: to assist economic development; to assist safety and personal security; to improve access and mobility; to protect and promote public health and - to ensure environmental sustainability.

“The NZTS represents a fundamental change in the way we deal with transport in New Zealand,” said Mr Swain. “This is the first time all the modes of transport – road, rail, sea and air - will be looked at in an integrated and long-term way.”

Mr Swain said the NZTS will guide government decision-making on transport policy. “Implementation will occur through policy development, rules and legislation, such as the Land Transport Management Bill, the Road Safety Strategy to 2010, work on emissions control, measures to improve maritime and aviation security and the Rail Safety Bill.

“The NZTS is also a reference point for all who wish to contribute to government transport policy and planning. All future projects that seek funding from the National Land Transport Fund will have to actively take into account the NZTS objectives.

“The strategy draws together the results of a wide range of consultation and discussion that has taken place over the past three years across the transport sector and with stakeholders including business, local government, Maori, transport users and the social sector. It also includes policy from other areas such as ‘Growing an Innovative New Zealand’ and the National Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy.”

Mr Swain acknowledged the support of United Future for its strategies, vision and objectives.

For an online copy of the New Zealand Transport Strategy go to –

www.beehive.govt.nz/nzts

Andrew Janes – Press Sec for Paul Swain – 04 4719889/021 270 9106 or andrew.janes@parliament.govt.nz For other releases by Paul Swain: www.beehive.govt.nz For business information from the government: http://www.nzbusiness.govt.nz

APPENDIX TO NZ TRANSPORT STRATEGY PRESS RELEASE

ACHIEVING THE VISION – EXAMPLES OF TRANSPORT WORK COMPLETED OR UNDERWAY

Land transport funding Land transport funding has increased to $1.5 billion under this government. Transfund New Zealand has allocated almost $392 million for construction of new roads for 2002/03, an increase of $38 million on last year.

Increasing the safety of road users The government has announced an additional $34 million for a mix of education, enforcement and engineering measures. The government established the dedicated Highway patrol which consists of 183 patrol cars with 225 staff. There are now 465 Community Road Safety Programmes. Funding is up from $2.5 million to more than $6 million this year.

Increasing regional development with transport The government has provided a dedicated fund for transport-related regional development of $30 million in 2002/03. In October 2002, the Minister of Transport directed Transfund to provide Northland and Tairawhiti (East Cape) with 100 percent funding for regional development transport projects.

Providing alternatives to roading Funding for alternatives to roading, including rail and barging, has been increased from $9 million in 2001/02 to $33 million in 2002/03. Public transport expenditure, traditionally viewed as an alternative to roading, has its own National Land Transport Fund (NLTP) allocation.

Encouraging use of rail The government purchased the Auckland rail corridor in May 2002. This will allow Auckland to start developing the rail network to help address traffic congestion.

Increasing public transport services and usage The government has doubled public transport funding since 1999 and removed funding constraints. This financial year, the National Land Transport Programme allocated $96 million to public transport.

Encouraging walking and cycling as modes of transport For the first time, $3 million funding has been dedicated to walking and cycling. A national walking and cycling strategy will help inform future funding needs for these modes. A draft is expected to be available for consultation in the next quarter.

Improving security within the transport sector Aviation Screening of domestic air passengers was introduced immediately after the 11 September 2001 attacks. Screening of international passengers was already underway. Industry working groups are investigating options and funding for screening of 100 percent of hold baggage on international flights. Maritime In December 2002 the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) will consider amending the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) international convention, to introduce improved ship and port security arrangements. Improving vehicle safety From 1 April 2002, imported used vehicles are required to have a frontal impact protection system – which is the most important advance in vehicle safety technology since the seat belt. This requirement will accelerate the rate at which newer used cars come into New Zealand.

Rail Safety Bill The government is preparing a Rail Safety Bill. The Bill will provide for rail safety and rules, and create a new sanctions regime which encourages individual rail licence holders to take proactive measures with regard to safety critical areas of their operations.

Research the relative costs of road and rail transport The Ministry of Transport is investigating the relative costs of road and rail transport to help inform future land transport policy. The first stage of this research is expected to be completed in 2003.

Reducing the impact of transport on the environment Traffic regulations were amended in March 2001 to incorporate a 10 second visual test which allows the Police to more easily identify and prosecute owners of excessively smoky vehicles. New measures are being explored to reduce the impact of vehicle exhaust emissions. The government has developed a preferred policy package to meet New Zealand’s commitment under the Kyoto Protocol. More details are available at: www.climatechange.govt.nz The government has agreed to changes in the fuel specifications to lower sulphur levels in diesel used in Auckland. Further changes will take effect in 2004.

Extending our aviation agreements New Zealand has negotiated the world’s first Multilateral Agreement on the Liberalisation of International Air Transportation with Brunei, Chile, Peru, Samoa, Singapore and the United States. The government has negotiated improved air services agreements with Australia, Tonga and Samoa and Japan.

Driver Licensing The government reduced the cost of older driver licensing and provided a license subsidy for rural school bus drivers

Improving taxi services In October 2002 new compulsory area knowledge and English language tests were introduced to toughen up the requirements for would-be taxi drivers.

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