Road freight peak body Ia Ara Aotearoa Transporting New Zealand has welcomed the Coalition Government’s introduction of legislation to fast-track infrastructure projects, saying it will be essential to delivering a modern, fit-for-purpose roading network.

Interim CEO Dom Kalasih says that transport projects, including Roads of National Significance, should be strong candidates for fast-tracking under the legislation.

“The Government has committed to an ambitious programme of 16 roading and public transport projects in its recently released land transport plan. Fast tracking legislation can help get this work underway promptly and affordably. Just look at the over 60 projects approved following the COVID-19 Fast-track Consenting legislation in 2020.

“Streamlining New Zealand’s glacial consenting processes is a great way to achieve productivity, safety, and resilience improvements for the entire country. Consenting processes are adding $1.3 billion to the cost of infrastructure projects every year, according to the Infrastructure Commission.

“Without fast-tracking legislation, and more substantial RMA reform in the medium term, we won’t be able to deliver a modern, fit-for-purpose roading network. We need to pull all the levers we can to increase construction capacity, particularly for transportation.

“We look forward to reviewing the legislation in detail and providing constructive input on behalf of our road freight operator members.”

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.

For further information, contact Dom Kalasih, interim chief executive, Ia Ara Aotearoa Transporting New Zealand, 027 441 4309.