Rail Freight Ports Group (RFPG)

The Rail Freight Ports Group (RFPG) is an Executive Committee of the ARA and includes above rail operators, track managers and port and intermodal managers in Australia and KiwiRail in NZ. The RFPG works in close alignment with the Freight on Rail Group (FORG), an independent group of seven major freight businesses in Australia. FORG is leading work on a limited number of specific public policy matters. 

More Information

For additional information, please contact Duncan Sheppard at or on 02 6270 4531.

The Future of Freight Rail in Australia 

Into the future, business as usual practices in the freight transport industry will no longer be sufficient to ensure Australia’s international competitiveness in light of the challenges posed:

  • The doubling of the land freight task by 2020, and the tripling of the task by 2050;
  • The projected growth of Australia’s population to 35 million by 2050;
  • The resultant road congestion issues (projected to cost Australia $30 billion p.a. by 2020);
  • The resultant scarcity of urban land;
  • The inefficiencies caused by the large volume, often inconsistent and duplicative regulations;
  • Increasing cost of liquid fuels; and
  • The move towards a carbon restricted economy.

The Australasian Railway Association advocates a multi-modal solution to the challenges facing freight transportation.

The right mode should be utilised for the task at hand taking into consideration the economic, environmental, reliability and safety performance of that mode.


ARA Ten Point Freight Plan

The ARA has published a ten point plan to achieve supply chain efficiencies and to get more freight on to rail.   The plan, which formed the basis of the ARA’s submission to the Federal Government for its National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy, identifies the 10 key critical issues Australia needs to improve freight supply chain efficiency and safety.  To download the plan, click here.


Fast Facts

  • Rail is the most cost effective mode of transport for inter-capital containerised freight movements.

  • Rail is a smarter economic choice for freight haulage for Australia. One freight train from Melbourne to Sydney replaces 110 semi-trailers travelling on the road.

  • Rail is up to 9 times safer than road freight.


Key Documents




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