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As a steward for the transport system, the Ministry has an important role to look ahead at the potential longterm impacts of current trends, emerging changes, and possible disruptions. We look for challenges and
opportunities for the transport system to develop in ways that contribute to New Zealand’s long-term prosperity and well-being.

Our strategic policy projects help to drive our approach to the future. They are designed to challenge the boundaries of current thinking, and to promote deep and sustained thought, research, and analysis about transport and its relationship with the economy, society, and environment.

This work programme involves substantial engagement with other stakeholders in the transport sector, via
research, workshops, and advisory groups.

In 2016/17, we continued work on our second set of strategy projects, and began two new projects. These
projects are outlined below:

Regulation 2025 – How should transport be regulated in 2025?

Public Transport 2045 – Looking thirty years ahead to discuss the long-term future for public transport in New Zealand.

Access – What are the critical issues for providing access, where access can be achieved by physical
mobility, digital connectivity and spatial proximity? (new project)

Strategic resilience – How do we deliver an adaptive integrated transport system that is resilient for the
future? (new project)

Regulation 2025

In its stewardship role in the transport sector, the Ministry works across the sector to consider whether
the regulatory system is fit-for-purpose and what opportunities exist for improving regulatory outcomes.

Transport also operates in a dynamic environment, with increasing constraints on parliamentary time for making regulation, pressure to reduce regulatory costs and new technologies that change the regulatory environment.

To make sure New Zealand has a fit-for-purpose regulatory system for the future, which contributes to
a thriving New Zealand economy, the Ministry initiated the strategic project – Regulation 2025 – to look at how transport could be regulated in 2025.

In 2016/17, the Ministry:

  • published and launched the major insights from the project
  • delivered a joint International Transport Forum and
  • Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation session and a workshop at the Intelligent Transport Systems World Congress in October 2016
  • designed and led a workshop to explore the implications of the project with transport stakeholders in December 2016
  • led a workshop on the future of regulation at the International Transport Forum Summit in Leipzig, Germany in June 2017, with an accompanying survey of Summit attendees.

Public Transport 2045 (PT2045)

This strategy project looks thirty years ahead to consider the long-term future for public transport in
New Zealand. The PT2045 project aims to improve the sector’s collective understanding of the possible future developments and implications for transport policy, regulation, planning, and investment.

In 2016/17, we developed four scenarios for the future of public transport in New Zealand’s cities and wrote a final report. The completion of this report was put on hold due to delays caused by the November 2016 earthquakes. The final report is expected to be released later this year.

We also used insights from this project to engage with stakeholders, generating further discussion and debate on the future of public transport and shared mobility.

Access (new project)

Transport is just one part of the access system. People travel because they want or need to access
opportunities, but there are other options for how people choose to access things. Access can be
achieved by physical mobility, digital connectivity and spatial proximity. The basis for the project was
to explore relationships between transport, ICT and land use planning, to identify the critical issues for
providing access in the future. We spoke to a range of stakeholders, and consequently commissioned a set of foundation papers.

Strategic resilience (new project)

The project investigates how to strengthen the strategic resilience of the New Zealand transport sector’s
operations and infrastructure for the future, in order to maintain the economic and social benefits enabled by the New Zealand transport system. Our work will focus on exploring the concept of strategic resilience and developing an action plan underpinned by the overarching theme – “how do we deliver an adaptive integrated transport system that is resilient for the future?” 

Scoping took place in the second half of 2016/17.

Next steps

In 2017/18, we will publish the PT2045 report and continue engaging with stakeholders on the future of
public transport.
We will also continue work on:

  • the Access project: pulling together the foundation research and discussing the emerging findings with stakeholders to identify opportunities to improve policy making in the future. We plan to publish a final report by the end of 2017.
  • the Strategic Resilience project: in conjunction with other transport sector agencies we will carry out a literature review, define key terms and propose delivery options of initiatives that would increase/ improve resilience related to:
    • institutional forms, including governance
    • investment and funding
    • asset management and asset sharing.

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