Brookfield Rail and Co-operative Bulk Handling (CBH) are currently in negotiations to agree on an interim access agreement for the State-owned rail network.
According to an article in today’s The West Australian newspaper, Brookfield Rail intends to increase charges, despite a recent rise in line with the consumer price index (CPI).
WAFarmers President Dale Park said an increase of up to 30 per cent is unreasonable.
“Western Australian grain growers are already operating in a high cost environment and Brookfield’s demands just worsen the situation,” Mr Park said.
“CBH must resist this at all costs.”
WAFarmers Grains President Duncan Young said WA already paid the highest access rates in the country.
“The access fees are 20 to 25 per cent higher than those in New South Wales and Victoria,” Mr Young said.
WAFarmers has cautioned Brookfield Rail about the problems which will arise if CBH is forced to cart grain to port by truck, including the increased likelihood of vehicular accidents and additional wear and tear on roads.
WAFarmers is hopeful that the parties can reach an equitable agreement over the network.
All media requests can be directed to WAFarmers Media and Communications Officer Sophie Kilby on (08) 9486 2100 or [email protected].