It’s an exciting time to be in rail.
As the rail industry flourishes, it is important that the rail sector continues to build long-term momentum, striving for a better rail industry based on a strategic future that provides for a stable pipeline of work, enables greater investment and opportunity for the rail industry and the broader Australasian economy.
At AusRAIL PLUS 2017, the Australasian Railway Association (ARA) launched the Deloitte Access Economics commissioned report, ‘Value of Rail – The Contribution of Rail in Australia’, which highlighted that the total contribution of the rail sector was around $26 billion a year (contributing 1.6% of GDP) to the Australian economy and creating over 140,000 jobs nationally.
Similarly in New Zealand, KiwiRail and the New Zealand Transport Agency taskforce launched the EY commissioned report into the ‘The Value of Rail to Aotearoa’. The report highlighted that the value of rail to New Zealand is estimated to be between $1.47 and $1.54 billion a year.
Across the Australasian region, significant investments are being made into rail infrastructure, with projects such as Inland Rail and movements towards metro operations in Sydney and Melbourne currently underway in Australia.
As an efficient, environmentally and socially beneficial mode of transport, rail also contributes to our quality of life. As we experience a rise in population and economic growth, rail will play a vital role in enabling future economic success and in ensuring rail is able to pick up the passenger load in urban and regional areas created by the increasing population demands on our networks and changes in customer needs brought on by innovation.
Given the rail industry’s drive for innovation, collaboration and government investment, it’s only fitting that AusRAIL 2018 takes place in Australia’s capital city, Canberra – Where the rail industry meets parliament and the bureaucracy.
With the theme, ‘Rail – For a Better Future’, AusRAIL 2018 will bring together key industry and government stakeholders, customers, researchers and suppliers to discuss the economic, social and environmental benefits and future opportunities of rail in developing a better integrated, liveable and prosperous society. The 2018 conference agenda and exhibition will showcase the industry’s current capabilities and skills and provide insight to rail’s future potential.