Inland Rail study shows investment opportunity for NSW towns

An economic study has been released by the Federal Government outlining potential growth in food processing, logistic hubs and consumer warehousing infrastructure in towns along the Inland Rail Line. 

The Northern NSW Long-Term Regional Opportunities report shows a significant boost to jobs and investment in the area as a direct result of the project.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the study was a call-to-arms for small and big business to take advantage of the enhanced connectivity and cost-competitive supply chains created by Inland Rail.

“The report shows Inland Rail is capable of supporting another 310 full-time jobs by 10 years of operation and could boost gross regional product by up to $1.7 billion over a 50-year period,” Mr. McCormack said.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said the report’s findings clearly demonstrated the important role Inland Rail will play in the nation’s economic recovery.

“We entered into this pandemic from a position of economic strength and we are confident our pro-growth and pro-business agenda will significantly boost our economy on the other side,” Mr. Cormann said.

He says businesses and communities along Inland Rail’s path will have access to fast, efficient and cost effective freight transport.

Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government and Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton, welcomed the report and the opportunities highlighted for the region.

“This report is an endorsement of what our Government has always known, Inland Rail is a transformational project that is going to deliver lasting opportunities for business,” Mr. Coulton said.

“The report includes industry case studies for Narrabri and Gunnedah, but what this report shows us is that there are opportunities for industry throughout northern New South Wales and not just along the 1700-kilometre line.”

The study region for the report included 16 local government areas that are around 50 kilometres east and 100 kilometres west of the Inland Rail line.

The report is part of a broader economic study released in March 2020 that builds on the existing benefits outlined in the 2015 Inland Rail Business case and forecasts that regional Queensland, NSW and Victoria will see a boost of up to $13.3 billion in gross regional product off the back of Inland Rail.

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