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From the Brisbanetimes click here!

Failure to invest in coal rail lines is dangerous, says resources council

Failure to invest in coal rail lines is dangerous, says resources council
Tony Moore
May 13, 2009 - 5:55PM

Queensland's Resources Council says the Federal Government's decision not to invest in rail lines from coal fields risked the creation of future bottlenecks.

Michael Roche, the Queensland Resources Council chief executive said money for two rail projects would have provided job security in regional Queensland.

"Kick-starting construction of the northern missing link rail line between Goonyella and Abbott Point and upgrading the sub-standard Townsville-Mount Isa railway line are two examples of where the Budget missed the boat for investments in the state and the nation that would be repaid many times over," Mr Roche said.

Mr Roche said the Federal Budget revealed last night concentrated too heavily on urban rail and road funding projects.

He said it was a gamble that the existing railways would be adequate when the economy improved.

"If they are wrong, and the upturn is sharper than forecast, then Queensland risks running into similar export supply chain bottlenecks that plagued the sector before the global financial crisis," Mr Roche said.

However the Committee for the Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) said the infrastructure project funding in Queensland was well targeted.

CEDA Queensland's state director David Edwards said he understood concerns about investment in mining and resource areas.

"But we have been saying for some time that the demands on the Building Australia Fund throughout Australia were always greater than what was available," Mr Edwards said.

"And the Federal Government has made some sensible decisions on infrastructure in South East Queensland that will add to productivity."

Massive drops in government revenue sapped the Building Australia Fund (BAF) down to $12.5 billion before the Budget, but $22 billion was invested Australia-wide in Tuesday's Federal Budget.
Half baked projects, have long term consequences ...
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