Long-term economic opportunities

Regional Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria could see $13.3 billion in added value off the back of Inland Rail.

We commissioned an 8-month study to understand Inland Rail’s long-term impact on regional economies, picture the possibilities for investment and help people make the most of the opportunities ahead. 

Download the full report on regional opportunities along the Inland Rail line and find more details below. 

Download the technical report which provides a detailed summary of the approach, research methodology and supporting analysis for the study. 

Jobs and economic value

The value of Inland Rail goes beyond moving our goods and the 16,000 jobs supported by its construction. To measure its long-term potential we asked a team at EY Australia to identify and assess the opportunities for regional jobs, economies and investments that operating Inland Rail might deliver. 

In addition to the benefits in the business case, Inland Rail can

  • add up to $13.3 billion in today’s terms to the value of goods and services produced in its first 50 years of operation
  • offer 14,000–16,000 job years for regional Australia over its first decade — that’s equivalent to 1,600 people working full time for 10 years 

2 kinds of growth

There is potential for direct and indirect economic growth off the back of a project like this – first in the supply chain, then in the industries that add value to transport and goods before they move. 

With Inland Rail we: 

  • get a cost-competitive and reliable alternative for transporting goods 
  • see the arrival of businesses who work with freight lines such as terminals, logistics, packaging, sorting, consolidation and warehousing 
  • attract businesses who add to the value of goods before they are transported such as food processors and manufacturers 
  • have the potential for business to gather in hubs, making the most of a concentrated group of services, transport options and suppliers.

Investment opportunities now and down the track

In conversations with locals, this study found short, medium and long-term opportunities for investments in industries such as logistics, food and fibre processing, other forms of transport, defence and manufacturing. It’s promising to see some of these already in train. 

About the study

EY Australia’s in-depth study looked at case studies, international examples, local knowledge and used the best modelling for the job to understand the potential for investment, employment and growth along the rail line. 

Modelling has looked at cumulative growth and investment as well as a snapshot of the jobs and economic value in the 10th, 30th and 50th year of operation. 

This work has been tested with industry, governments and communities. In August 2019, the study team went to Narrabri, Toowoomba, Wagga Wagga and Wodonga to seek people’s views and test early concepts. 

We reported back to those communities, presenting the high-level preliminary results through information sessions in December 2019. 

This study builds on:

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