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Government transport sector to be reviewed

10 December 2003 Media Statement

Government transport sector to be reviewed

The government is to review its agencies in the transport sector, State Services Minister Trevor Mallard and Transport Minister Paul Swain announced today.

The ministers said the review would explore opportunities to improve performance in the sector.

“With the development of a comprehensive and long term transport strategy for New Zealand, it is now timely to review the effectiveness of the sector as a whole.

“The scope of the review comprises the Ministry of Transport and the six transport crown entities: Civil Aviation Authority (includes the Aviation Security Service), Land Transport Safety Authority, Maritime Safety Authority, Transport Accident Investigation Commission, Transfund New Zealand and Transit New Zealand.

“The purpose of the review is to:
- consider whether the government transport sector is best arranged and has the capability to implement the New Zealand Transport Strategy and to carry out its other requirements and obligations;
- consider ways to enhance the performance of the sector; and
- propose any necessary changes.

“A range of options will be considered including the status quo, more effective and better integrated provision of policy advice and service delivery, shared services, the transfer of functions between entities, and structural change,” the ministers said.

“The government is committed to a strong state sector and to improving the delivery of government services for New Zealanders.

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“We do not wish to undertake wholesale reform of the state sector. But we are always looking for improvements and will take opportunities to make changes when we believe it is timely and appropriate to do so. The transport sector review is part of this ongoing process,” the ministers said.

Sector reviews were suggested in the government’s 2001 assessment of New Zealand’s public management system, the Review of the Centre. The Review recommended a series of initiatives to address fragmentation and improve the alignment of state sector agencies with government objectives.

The review team has been asked to provide the Ministers of State Services and Transport with a draft report by mid-April 2004.

Questions and answers are attached. The cabinet paper and terms of reference are also available on:

Transport Sector Review - Questions and answers

What is the background to the sector reviews?
Sector reviews were suggested in the Government’s 2001 appraisal of New Zealand’s public management system, the Review of the Centre. The Review of the Centre identified four areas for improvement:
- focus more on results/outcomes;
- becoming more citizen and community centred;
- building the culture, people and leadership; and
- better integration of structures and processes.
The full Review report can be found at:

Who will carry out the transport review?
The State Services Commission and the Ministry of Transport will jointly sponsor and manage the review. The review team will comprise officials from the Ministry of Transport, Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Treasury and the State Services Commission.

There will be opportunities for crown entities, unions and industry groups to provide their views to the review team.

What other sectors have been reviewed?
Other sectors and agencies reviewed include the Justice sector, the Ministry of Women’s Affairs and Ministry of Youth Affairs.

What is the purpose of the reviews?
The government is always seeking ways to improve the performance of the state sector. This work programme follows on from the government decision in its last term to improve the performance of the social sector by merging the Department of Work and Income with the Ministry for Social Policy. The purpose of the sector reviews is to consider ways to improve whole-of-government effectiveness to achieve results for New Zealanders. The reviews are intended to increase alignment between government agencies and reduce fragmentation where this is a barrier to improving performance.

What entities are included in the review?
The government’s transport sector consists of the Ministry of Transport and six crown entities. The Ministry of Transport is the government’s principal advisor on transport policy and plays a strategic co-ordination role. Three of the entities (the Civil Aviation Authority, the Land Transport Safety Authority and the Maritime Safety Authority) have policy, regulatory and supervisory functions in relation to transport safety. One (the Transport Accident Investigation Commission) carries out safety investigations into transport accidents. The other two fund land transport infrastructure and services (Transfund New Zealand) and manage the state highway system (Transit New Zealand).

What is the New Zealand Transport Survey?
The New Zealand Transport Strategy (NZTS) was released in December 2002. The NZTS vision is that by 2010 New Zealand will have an affordable, integrated, safe, responsive, and sustainable transport system. The strategy has objectives relating to economic development, safety and personal security, access and mobility, public health and environmental sustainability. Achieving the strategy will require a high degree of cooperation and coordination both within the sector and between sector agencies and a wide range of central and local government organisations, as well as local communities and the private sector.


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