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Wednesday, 9 October 1991
Page: 1633

(Question No. 1041)

Mr Hollis asked the Minister for Land Transport, upon notice, on 4 September 1991:

Is the Bureau of Transport and Communications Economics able to provide data on the respective tonnages of freight carried by (a) rail and (b) road on the inter-capital corridors.

Mr Robert Brown —-The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

Yes. Freight carried by rail and road on the intercapital transport corridors consists of three types of traffic, interstate, intrastate and intercapital. Data on intrastate freight traffic, which uses the corridor but does not leave the State, are not available. Road interstate and rail intercapital traffic data are not available by corridor.

(a) I am advised by the Bureau, that data from the National Freight Group indicate that 9.1 million tonnes of interstate rail freight, crossing State boundaries on the corridor, were carried in 1989-90 on the intercapital corridors.

Data for intercapital traffic, which originated and ended in a capital city, are not available for individual corridors, except for Sydney-Melbourne. Total intercapital rail freight tonnage was estimated at 5.5 million tonnes in 1989-90 (see table 1), using the ABS estimate of intercapital road freight at 9.4 million tonnes and the National Freight Group estimate of rail's share of the intercapital freight market of around 37 per cent.

Table 1--Interstate Rail Freight

by Corridor, 1989-90


Corridor ('000 tonnes) Intercapital

Sydney-Melbourne 2,091 1,842

Sydney-Brisbane 2,012 n.a

Sydney-Adelaide 844 n.a

Sydney-Perth 569 n.a

Melbourne-Brisbane 397 n.a

Melbourne-Adelaide 1,510 n.a

Melbourne-Perth 605 n.a

Adelaide-Perth 795 n.a

Brisbane-Adelaide 234 n.a

Brisbane-Perth 38 n.a

Total 9,095 5,500

n.a--not available

(b) According to the Industry Commission, interstate road freight amounted to approximately 15 million tonnes in 1989-90. ABS estimates of inter-capital road freight was 9.4 million tonnes (see table 2).

Table 2--Interstate Road Freight

by Corridor, 1989-90


Corridor ('000 tonnes) Intercapital

Sydney-Melbourne n.a 4,271

Sydney-Brisbane n.a 1,173

Sydney-Adelaide n.a 734

Melbourne-Brisbane n.a 859

Melbourne-Adelaide n.a 1,513

Perth-Eastern States n.a 814

Total 15,000 9,364

n.a--not available