This page belongs to: National Rail Procurement and Manufacturing Strategy

Pillar 2: Harmonise standards for manufacturing rolling stock

Harmonising standards for rolling stock will improve economies of scale, increase production runs and lower unit costs for Australian manufacturers. This will support a more competitive and efficient domestic rail manufacturing sector. This work will complement the current rail harmonisation work led by the National Transport Commission (NTC) and Rail Industry Safety and Standards Board (RISSB).

Options will be explored, in consultation with industry, to adopt a set of harmonised rolling stock manufacturing standards, complemented by a set of mandatory standards. Bilateral or multilateral agreements between jurisdictions can be encouraged to deliver benefits in upcoming rail projects.

Action 1: Identify existing standards that could be used in a national procurement framework and prioritise highest value outcomes

Sub-action Indicative timeframe (calendar year)
Work with stakeholders to identify barriers to the adoption of national or global standard and identify opportunities to address these barriers, drawing on existing work. Quarter 3, 2024

Identify opportunities to leverage and/or extend initiatives under the National Rail Action Plan to develop rolling stock harmonised standards.

ONRIC will consider the 3-tier standards framework that is being delivered by the NTC.

Package of standards delivered by Quarter 1, 2025

Action 2: Achieve multilateral commitment to include standards in procurement

Sub-action Indicative timeframe (calendar year)
Identify a pathway with states and territories to deliver a multilateral commitment on inclusion of package of standards for future procurements across the whole-of asset lifecycle. By Quarter 1, 2025

Facilitate agreement by state and territories to incorporate the standards package into procurement frameworks/processes. 

Seek endorsement from state and territory transport ministers, noting complementarity of this work with the national rail interoperability reform agenda. 

Commitment provided and implemented by Quarter 3, 2025
Monitoring: Australian Government to work with states and territories to monitor implementation of commitment and make recommendations to strengthen implementation where appropriate.  Annually from 4 2025