A year under Labour has caused chaos and instability in the transport sector, National’s Transport spokesperson Paul Goldsmith says.
“There have been more strikes across the sector in one year than there was during nine years of a National Government.
“This has meant critical transport links have faced uncertainty, consumer and public transport users have seen delays, cost increases and even more congestion.
“Transport Minister Phil Twyford has said if there is no bus coming, why would people turn up to the bus stop. With the current strikes in Wellington, there are no buses turning up at the moment and the Minister blames everyone else. His party has explicitly encouraged union activity.
“The problems don’t end there. Kiwis are also facing record high prices when they fill up their cars. Since the Government took office petrol prices have risen over 40 cents. Motorists are forced to pay over $20 extra every time they fill up their cars.
“In light of these record high prices the Government’s solution is to commission an inquiry. This will take months and there are still two more four cent excise increases to come into force, increasing the pain for hard working New Zealanders.
“While the costs of transport continues to rise, the Government is also ensuring that less funding is available through our regions for major highway projects.
“The Government’s decision to axe $5.3 billion from state highways to fund a tram project in Auckland has resulted in projects like the Tauranga Northern Link, Otaki to Levin and Whangarei to Te Hana being stripped back and other major highway plans axed completely.
“One year into this Government’s term, New Zealanders are facing a transport system rife with strikes and delays, record high fuel prices and fewer roading projects.
“This is not a positive outlook for the transport sector.
“In contrast, National’s vision for transport would have seen sensible investment in public transport and rail, a major new plan for regional highway investment and a commitment to keep fuel taxes down.”