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Briefing To The Incoming Minister Highlights Big Challenges For Transport

NZ Transport Agency Waka Kotahi’s (NZTA’s) briefing to the incoming Minister highlights the scale of the challenges facing the transport system, says road freight peak body Ia Ara Aotearoa Transporting New Zealand.

The NZTA document, released today, discusses pressures including the aging state of roads and network infrastructure, increasingly severe weather events, the expanding number of activity classes (including coastal shipping) being funded, congestion, and emissions reduction.

Transporting New Zealand Policy Advisor Billy Clemens says the briefing demonstrates why the Coalition Government needs to prioritise maintenance and improvements in the roading network in the coming term, particularly in the upcoming Government Policy Statement on land transport.

"Over the past few years, our members have been disappointed to see the road user charges they pay go towards speculative investments in areas like rail and coastal shipping, while the condition of the roads continues to decline. NZTA has acknowledged in their briefing they haven’t been able to deliver a sustainable level of road rehabilitation in that time."

"Trucks cover substantially more of their cost to the government than light vehicle and rail transport do, and pay around 65% of total road user charges. Transport operators have a keen interest in seeing that revenue well spent."

"It is vitally important that the Coalition Government’s upcoming policy statement on land transport prioritises road maintenance, network resilience and strategic roading investments. Our roads and bridges also need to be improved to accommodate heavier vehicles and boost freight efficiency. Higher capacity trucks can reduce emissions on a tonne-kilometer basis by up to 35 percent, while also reducing congestion. Battery electric trucks are also substantially heavier than their diesel equivalents, that also needs to be factored in."

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About Ia Ara Aotearoa Transporting New Zealand

Ia Ara Aotearoa Transporting New Zealand is the peak national membership association representing the road freight transport industry. Our members operate urban, rural and inter- regional commercial freight transport services throughout the country.

Road is the dominant freight mode in New Zealand, transporting 92.8% of the freight task on a tonnage basis, and 75.1% on a tonne-km basis. The road freight transport industry employs over 34,000 people across more than 4,700 businesses, with an annual turnover of $6 billion.

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