Minister backs rail freight

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The government is pushing ahead with plans to support the rail freight sector with investment in upgrading key routes, transport minister Norman Baker told Rail Freight Group members at the group’s annual lunch.

Baker described the sector as being “good for both the economy and the environment”, pointing out that  around a quarter of all containers moving inland from the nation’s ports by rail, and almost all the coal used in power generation is supplied by rail.

RFG chairman, Tony Berkeley, said: “The rail freight sector has had a good year, particularly in regard to the strong growth in the intermodal sector, and has enjoyed continued investment and support. But we now urgently need the ORR to publish its conclusions on freight charges, which we hope will be the right answer for the sector.

“We are pleased with all that government is doing to support the sector, and provide investment. We urgently need to unlock more investment in terminals – and I hope this is the last Christmas lunch where I have to mention the on-going delay at Radlett,” he said.

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