The Ministry's long-term outcomes

The Ministry has developed a strategic framework that supports the government’s direction for transport and is flexible to respond to changes in circumstances, technologies and priorities over time. The objective is to create a transport system that maximises economic and social benefits for NewZealand, and minimises harm. It is for the government of the day to decide on the relative emphasis between these. 

We have four long-term outcomes for the transport system that we will pursue over the next 20 or more years. We are aiming to create a transport system which is:

  • effective
  • efficient
  • resilient
  • safe and responsible.

Effective – moves people and freight where they need to go in a timely manner

This outcome captures the core function of the transport system which connects NewZealand domestically and internationally. The outcome links employees, employers and businesses together, and enables individuals to access services and make social connections. Transport is a critical part of the supply chain that delivers goods to domestic and international markets, and meets the travel needs of our international tourists. 

Efficient – delivers the right infrastructure and services to the right level at the best cost

Better transport infrastructure and services can lower costs and increase accessibility for businesses by expanding markets and improving access to suppliers. The quality of infrastructure, and of transport services, has a significant influence on the role transport plays and its contribution to the functioning of a successful, competitive economy and a connected society.

It is also important for the transport system itself to have the right mix between lower costs and service quality, so it is not a burden on the country. Funding for transport is, like funding for other areas of government expenditure, a scarce resource.

Resilient – meets future transport needs and endures shocks

Transport infrastructure often has a life span of many decades. With the investments we make today having such long-term impacts, it is important that the transport system is developed with an eye not only on current needs, but also on future needs and the related uncertainties.

We need to have confidence that the transport system can resist and be resilient to intentional and unintentional dangers. The system needs to be flexible enough to quickly respond to security requirements that may be imposed on us by other countries or international organisations. It also needs to be resilient to deal with shocks, such as major earthquakes or extreme weather events.

Resilience will enable the transport system to continue to meet its economic and social functions into the future.

Safe and responsible – reduces the harms from transport

The operation of the transport system gives rise to a number of undesirable consequences. These include the social cost of road crashes, greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental impacts, and public health impacts (such as air quality and noise). It is important, therefore, that these types of issues are mitigated in cost-effective ways.

We will report progress annually

The Ministry will report progress against the long-term outcomes through its annual report. The Ministry’s Transport Monitoring Indicator Framework is available on the Ministry’s website ( The framework provides detailed data on the performance of the transport system across most of the outcome areas. The Ministry also works across the transport Crown entities to monitor and report on progress against outcomes.

We are working with the transport Crown entities and the wider sector to improve our current set of performance measures and indicators for the transport sector. We will use these new measures in our future reporting.


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