Union says that local workers can put Queensland trains back on track

NGR train (Department of Transport and Main Roads)

Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU) Queensland state secretary says that Rockhampton workers can manufacture the remaining 62 trains ordered by Queensland Rail, after the first 13 ordered from India arrived with faults.

According to The Morning Bulletin, Webb wants the Queensland government to re-shore the train manufacturing jobs. The previous QLD government contracted an Indian consortium to build the 75 New Generation Rollingstock (NGR) trains.

“It’s the multiplying effect in regards to the supply chain, it’s the multiplying effect in regards to small businesses, when people have got money in their pocket because they are gainfully employed they spend money in their local economy,” Webb said.

“The multipliers in the economy are absolutely huge – yes it takes an investment, it does cost money to do so, but you have got to put in the money to do so.”

The AMWU Qld secretary said that the Queensland rail manufacturing industry had employed 600 people in the past, which had now dropped to less than 200. 

However, the government said that no local tenders were received for the NGR when the government was seeking submissions to build the trains. 

QLD transport minister Jackie Trad said that said she had “made clear” the consortium was not to send any more trains until the design issues had been fixed.