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Chamber welcomes release of State Infrastructure Strategy

Release Date: 3/10/2012
The Hunter Business Chamber welcomes the release today of the NSW 20 year State Infrastructure Strategy by INSW and commends its approach from an economic base while calling for consensus on infrastructure priorities.

Chamber CEO, Kristen Keegan said, “There is a strong focus on delivering those projects that will relieve current "pinch points‟ and Hunter communities are certainly in the sights of INSW in this regard.

“I am particularly pleased to see priorities placed on regional road and rail issues with planned pacific highway upgrades and both road and rail improvements in the Hunter coal communities. This is coupled with targeted bridge upgrades that will improve freight efficiencies.

“We look forward to the improvements identified in the five to ten year plan with priority projects including the F3 to Pacific Highway upgrade at Raymond Terrace, the upgrade of water and wastewater in regional towns and improved water supply for Hunter and Regional areas.

“While not identified as immediate priorities, the mainline rail system from Newcastle to Sydney along with improved interstate gas and electricity transmission did focus in the longer term plan.

“While key projects that improve productivity will be delivered more immediately it is also acknowledged that existing infrastructure needs to be used more efficiently.

“If we want to realize significantly better productivity and future capital investment, we also need to ensure that current operations are working efficiently at their capacity.

“While there are some wins identified for the Hunter in the plan, it is also clear that there needs to be a change of behaviour at the operational and state agency level to ensure State infrastructure needs are met in the future.

“Like a successful business, it's about investing capital in key areas coupled with ongoing operational efficiencies.

“We applaud INSW on the delivery of this key strategy and look forward to the Government's response along with how and when funding will be made available,” Kristen said.

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