Application for certification of the Queensland Rail Network
On 19 May 2010 the Council received applications for declaration of the services provided by the Blackwater, Goonyella, Moura and Newlands coal railway facilities in Central Queensland owned by QR Limited (the Services). (On 13 October 2010 the applicant notified the Council of the withdrawal of this application. Consequently, the Council did not make a final recommendation to the designated Minister in respect of declaration of the Services.)
On 17 June 2010 the Council also received an application for certification of the Queensland Rail Access Regime as an effective regime.
The Council's consideration of the certification and declaration applications
Many of the critical issues that arose in relation to the certification application mirrored the issues that arose in relation to the declaration applications (in particular as they relate to declaration criterion (e) in section 44G(2) of the TPA). The Council undertook its consideration of the application for certification of the Queensland Rail Access Regime at the same time as its consideration of the declaration applications and, where appropriate, through a common process.
The Council invited interested parties to make written submissions on both applications before 19 July 2010. The Council received three submissions.
In light of the complexity of the circumstances surrounding the applications, the Council provided an opportunity for parties to make supplementary submissions addressing the consequences of any significant developments which occurred after the first submission deadline. The supplementary submission period ended on 16 August 2010. The Council received three supplementary submissions.
After considering the initial and supplementary submissions, the Council on 14 September 2010 released its draft recommendations for the declaration applications and the certification application. Interested parties were invited to make submissions on both matters before 14 October 2010. The Council received two submissions on the draft certification recommendation which are available under the Submissions on draft recommendation tab.
On 22 November 2010 the Council provided its final recommendation to the decision-making Commonwealth Minister, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, the Hon David Bradbury MP, on the application for certification of the Queensland Rail Access Regime.
On 19 January 2011 the Commonwealth Minister made his decision to certify the Queensland Rail Access Regime as an effective access regime for a period of ten years. The decision is consistent with the Council's final recommendation.
Copies of the Minister's decision and statement of reasons and the Council's final recommendation are available under the Final recommendation and decision tab.