This paper describes some of the recent changes to rail transport in Australia, especially the implications of recent reforms. From 1974, the Trade Practices Act (TPA) has protected the rights of consumers, and encouraged and promoted competition and fair trading. Recent changes to the TPA have focused on providing open access to 'essential' facilities for third parties and increasing competition. The new competition laws are now being applied to all sectors of the Australian economy, but especially in relation to railway lines, electricity grids, and gas pipelines. Through the TPA, the Commonwealth Government has established a national regime for significant rail infrastructure, which can take precedence over State regimes. Almost all the States have enacted their own, different, rail access regimes. Although the new arrangements are considerably more complex and have some additional costs, positive benefits are emerging from them. The entry of freight forwarders into the rail haulage market has helped to facilitate the marketing of rail freight in general. The continuing privatisation of rail will make it even more competitive. Railways continue to have a strong position in the Australian transport market. A chart shows the structure of Australian freight railways, excluding private mineral lines. For the covering abstract see IRRD E104573.


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 11-6

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00790394
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport Research Laboratory
  • ISBN: 0-86050-320-8
  • Files: ITRD
  • Created Date: Apr 11 2000 12:00AM