New research is expected to bolster support for more road and rail upgrades in the Central Highlands to cut freight times and costs.
The Central Highlands Freight Task Analysis Survey has found close to 48 percent of respondents export goods and materials from the region and 62 percent import goods and materials to the region.
More than 5o percent of the exporters identified challenges with freight options including schedules, infrastructure and ineffective costs of small loads.
The survey was conducted in June 2020 by the Central Highlands Development Corporation (CHDC) in conjunction with Central Highlands Regional Council (CHRC) and CQ Inland Port (CQIP).
The survey results will help build a case for further investment in infrastructure and services to provide for more cost effective and efficient supply chains.
The data demonstrated a significant demand to improve logistics connectivity for freight in and out of the Central Highlands, said CHDC Business and Investment Attraction Manager Peter Dowling.
“This demand is only going to increase when you consider freight volumes in Australia are projected to grow by more than 35 percent between 2018 and 2040, according to the National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy,” he said.
The study would serve to advocate for further support from State and Federal Governments said CQIP Project Director Kevin Doggett.
“The survey was further confirmation of a detailed study completed in 2015 by the Department of Main Roads and Transport that quantified freight imported and exported to and from the region and opportunities for supply chain savings using a multi-modal approach,” Mr Doggett said.
“CQ Inland Port looks forward to working with local business in developing the intermodal terminal operation and ensuring that local business can take advantage of reduced supply chain costs.”
The data has value-added to a larger Central Queensland and Wide Bay Burnett Transport Analytics project, which is foundational work to better understand transport across regions.
This project has engaged the CSIRO with the use of their Transport Network Strategic Investment Tool (TraNSIT).
The survey attracted 147 responses. The major responders by industry were 40.1 percent agriculture, 12.9 percent retail, 8.8 percent manufacturing and processing, 8.2 percent transport, 7.5 percent mining, 6.8 percent construction and 12.2% Other.