Rail builds platform for economic recovery

State Owned Enterprises Transport

Transport Minister Michael Wood and State-Owned Enterprises Minister Dr David Clark today released the Government’s long term vision for a sustainable rail network that supports our economic recovery.

New Zealand Rail Plan lays out how the Government is building a resilient, reliable and safe network, as well as the indicative investments over the next decade.

Michael Wood said rail is key to keeping New Zealand moving and is supporting our economic recovery.

“The disruptions to the supply chain due to COVID have shown how important it is to have a reliable rail network to keep freight flowing, which keeps our economy moving. The Rail Plan shows how we’re getting rail back on track after the former government let it slide into managed decline.

“Rail is worth up to $2.1 billion to our economy every year and reduces emissions and congestion. Annually it prevents 2.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions and 26 million car trips in Auckland and Wellington,” Michael Wood said.

David Clark said investing in infrastructure like rail creates jobs, which is part of the Government’s COVID economic plan.

“KiwiRail’s work renewing the Northland Rail line supported more than 560 jobs, and work to replace the existing maintenance building at Hillside will support around 100 more.

“Our investments like the new Hamilton to Auckland service Te Huia meant 40 new staff and apprentices have been taken on at Hutt Workshops. We’re building a sustainable 21st century rail network and supporting jobs,” David Clark said.