Rail union backs business calls over KiwiRail

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Business “appalled” with government’s treatment of KiwiRail

The rail workers’ union is backing calls from Mainfreight chairman Bruce Plested for “more positive support for long-term rail infrastructure”, says Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) General Secretary Wayne Butson.

“Earlier this month Treasury documents revealed that the government had received advice to downsize or shut down KiwiRail.”

“Yet Mr Plested’s comments, delivered at the annual Mainfreight shareholders meeting, indicate that there’s business appetite for greater investment in rail. The government advice to downsize or shut down wasn’t based on business confidence or empirical evidence, it was all ideological,” says Butson.

“KiwiRail is the victim of years of systematic underinvestment. After the company was privatised it was stripped by corporate raiders. But even after the public took back control, successive governments never formulated a long-term plan for the state company.”

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“Rail is an important part of the national infrastructure and it needs government support. KiwiRail is currently considering whether to reinvest in an electric fleet or downgrade to a cheaper and dirtier diesel fleet. If there was a long-term plan in place then it would be an easy decision to reinvest in the electric fleet,” says Butson.

“But continual pressure from government to minimise costs and maximise returns means that the diesel fleet looks attractive because it’s cheaper in the short term. The government needs to get its act together and formulate a long-term plan.”

2 COMMENTS

  1. ” …. Mainfreight chairman Bruce Plested for “more positive support for long-term rail infrastructure”

    What a load of logical fallacy crap ! He’s saying he’s supporting investment in rail because he doesn’t want attention drawn to the the fact that NZ’s Road Transport operators did summersaults of joy when the scum politicians of the day fucked rail at the get-go for their trucking company mates and their massive profits . One of the founding members of Mainfreight owns a signature class Aston Martin sports car worth millions . No , seriously . It’s hand built and signed by Aston Martins people, is reportedly worth many millions ( 2.8 million to be exact ) and was flown here in a fucking 747 ! http://www.nzherald.co.nz/motoring/news/article.cfm?c_id=9&objectid=10725298

    C’mon all you brave bloggers ? What’re the historic relationships between transport operators, politicians and the literal and financial destruction of OUR rail system ? Close ? Very close ? Incestuously close?
    How about the rail sell-off’s ? Then the buy – backs ? And all that public money those fucks stole out of our country thus crippling OUR assets that’s gone back and forth, not to mention the actual , physical rail tracks leading into our export sector farming hinterlands. They were pulled up! Imagine actually pulling up rail tracks ? Outrageous ! Was that act of treason designed to ensure the profitability of a road transport industry, consisting of a cadre of crooks ? (Paying shit money to their drivers? ) For their fancy little cock-extender cars ?
    You believe that bull shit artist Plested ? Then I have a bridge to sell you. It spans the Auckland harbour . It’s quite big and I want $5million for it . I’ll only take cash though, sorry. Sky Tower ? Anybody ? That’s mine too. Open to offers on that one . Oh , and my airport? Yep, own that too. So, call me . Leave a message after the fucking beep .

  2. I would say the majority of MPs, past and present have suffered from short-sightedness and greed. The present rail system in NZ is proof of that.

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