Australian Wheat Exports Still Suffering Logistical Problems

Having prayed for a decent harvest after two years of drought, Western Australia is now struggling to this season's bumper wheat crop to market bogged down by ailing infrastructure.

Korean buyers wrote a letter of complaint to the Australian Embassy in Seoul last month asking for the situation to be sorted out quickly, as vessels waiting to load outside Western Australia state backed up causing delays of up to six weeks.

Only a third of this year's harvest has so far been exported, and grower-owned business Cooperative Bulk Handling, which operates a monopoly over all grain exports in the state, is blaming among other things the state's ageing rail infrastructure.

"We have a ridiculous situation where we have trains running at night because the railway lines buckle during the day. They stand idle and yet we have ships waiting for grain," said a CBH spokesman.

"We also have trains which, quite frankly I could walk faster than with a broken leg than they could travel," he added with some typically pithy Oz humour, before appealing for "any vehicle that can comply to the regulations and our code of practice" to come forward to help get this year's harvest to port.