CPF Reports: 2010 has continued a decade of dominance with bicycles outselling cars each year for the past decade by over 2,000,000. Over 11.5million bikes were sold in that time.
Selling over 1.3million bikes in 2010, the Australian bicycle industry is now showing clear signs of returning to its record levels of 2007. These figures represent a 12% increase from the previous year and a 67% increase from 2001.
The sales of bicycles are supported by figures released by the Australian Government indicating a 32% increase in people choosing to ride a bike in the same period, Australians are choosing the bicycle for transport, recreation, fitness, general health and sport in increasing numbers.
The choice to ride a bicycle is increasingly broadly based across the entire population; it’s not just the domain of the fit, the fast or the sporty.
With the community’s support for and participation in cycling and the benefits extending to the economic, health, environmental and social arenas, there are strong arguments for the government to do more to support it.
The recent release of the National Cycling Strategy 2011-2016 by the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport shows the time is right for the federal government to commit more funding to achieve its objectives. Signed by all federal, state and territory transport ministers the National Cycling Strategy aims to double the rate of cycling by 2016.
Federal leadership and increased investment in infrastructure, educational and promotional programs will be needed however if this goal is to be achieved. The Cycling Promotion Fund applauds the recent federal commitment to the national AustCycle program which will encourage more Australians to acquire the skills they need to cycle safely, but there’s more that needs to be done.
The Australian Government is facing critical decisions on key transport issues. In 2005 the cost in lost productivity through transport congestion was $9billion per year, forecast to grow to $20billion per year by 2020.
We are facing an obesity crisis, the average Australian would get their daily requirements of physical activity if they walked, rode a bicycle or caught public transport to work.
The use of bicycles for transport, recreation and fitness continues to have increasing benefits to the Australian economy and these will continue to increase as bicycle sales continue to grow. The Cycling Promotion Fund calls on the Federal government to invest in support of the increasing numbers of Australians who are voting with their feet and choosing to ride a bicycle.
source: Cycling Promotion Fund