Consultation begins on NTC's future

Transport ministers to decide if the NTC should be scrapped, as a review begins into the regulatory body

By Brad Gardner

Transport ministers will this year debate the future of the National Transport Commission (NTC), as a review begins into the regulatory body.

The Australian Transport Council (ATC) will consider a report in September over whether the NTC should be scrapped or if amendments should be made to its Act.

The report will be compiled following a lengthy process, which began this week after the NTC called for public submissions on the NTC’s effectiveness and the issues facing the industry.

Those submitting will need to address 10 questions, which include assessing the progress of reforms, what changes are needed and whether the NTC should be given more powers.

In releasing a background paper on the review, the NTC listed its achievement since it was established in 2004.

This includes Chain of Responsibility, Performance Based Standards and, recently, the National Transport Plan and Policy Framework.

"The plan identified a range of issues that contribute to the competitiveness and sustainability of the transport sector, the priority areas for national policy cooperation and the challenges ahead," the paper says.

Individual transport ministers are responsible for developing the plan around the themes raised by the NTC, such as infrastructure, efficiency, congestion and climate change.

The submission process closes on March 6, at which point the steering committee will read them before preparing its preliminary findings.

Once the review's steering committee presents its findings, the ATC will then provide a final report and recommendations to the Council of Australian Governments (COAG).

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