A leading transport group has called on politicians not to shy away from infrastructure investment because of the recession. The Freight Transport Association (FTA) has said that, by building a more efficient transport network, politicians could help rebuild the UK economy and help meet Britain's climate change ambitions.
James Hookham, FTA's director of policy, said: "Having a transport network that's fit for purpose is not an optional extra for any country looking to have a successful economy. Every industry relies upon transport, whether it's getting goods to market or simply ensuring there's paper for the photocopier, but congestion, whether it's on roads or on the rails, not only impedes Britain's ability to compete, but can also increase our carbon emissions."
Rather than a full-frontal road building programme, FTA is urging politicians to take a more intelligent approach, making full use of the infrastructure already available and encouraging greater interchange between the different modes. Moving goods between road and rail or rail and sea can be challenging and costly, yet these are areas where, with the right political backing and investment, Britain's trading position could be much improved.
Hookham explained: "We support the calls from politicians to put more freight on rail, not least to free up road capacity for those businesses that have no choice but to use them. However, politicians seem less enthusiastic when it comes to supporting the building of more rail interchanges or even boosting rail access for freight by bringing down access charges. Britain's economic future needs them to put their might where their mouths are."
From Logistics Briefing