ARTC Board Appointments

The Federal Government has broadened the skill base of the Board of the Australian Rail Track Corporation with three new appointments to the Board. Which were approved last week.

The Minister for Transport and Regional Services, John Anderson and the Minister for Finance and Administration, John Fahey, today announced the appointment of Ms Martine Pop, Mr Dale Budd and Mr Robert Maher as Directors of the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC), the body that manages Australia’s mainline interstate rail track as a single entity.

Ms Pop is an Executive Consultant and has provided consulting and advisory services to public and private sectors over several years. Ms Pop brings to the ARTC Board extensive experience in banking and managing financial risk.

Mr Budd has an engineering background and is currently the Interim Executive Director of the Canberra Business Council. Mr Budd has wide experience in government relations and reform and has been integrally involved in initiating and developing proposals for high-speed railways in Australia.

Mr Maher has a military background and currently provides consulting services principally in relation to providing advice on strategy and planning for the banking and defence industries. Mr Maher has a solid background in management.

“The new members bring a broad range of experience to the Board that will enhance the Board’s skill base, which is already quite extensive, ” Mr Fahey said. Mr Anderson said the current environment in which private sector rail operations would increase substantially through the joint sale of National Rail Corporation (NRC) and FreightCorp was a demanding period for the ARTC. Following the sale, ARTC would need to demonstrate an innovative approach to providing track access that meets the demands of industry.

“The expansion of the skill base of the ARTC Board comes at an opportune time in the context of the rail reform process, I am sure that the additional knowledge and skills that the appointees bring to the Board will serve the ARTC well during this critical period of rail reform,” said Mr Anderson.

In addition to the NRC/FreightCorp sale by the Commonwealth, NSW and Victorian governments, the ARTC is negotiating with NSW to finalise Arrangements where it is able to manage the NSW interstate tail track.

A Wholesale Access Agreement between the ARTC and Westnet the private owner of the interstate track west of Kalgoorlie in Western Australia enables the ARTC to sell access to interstate rail operators on behalf of Westnet.

In announcing the Board appointments, Mr Anderson and Mr Fahey paid tribute to the achievements of the current Board members who had successfully guided the ARTC during its establishment to this point.

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