Business pays for no N'castle freight: ALP

Businesses and consumers north of Sydney are paying thousands of dollars in extra costs after the Berejiklian government's "secret deal" to block Newcastle port from developing a freight terminal, the ALP says.

"The secret arrangement imposed by the Liberals and Nationals when they privatised the ports means that Newcastle is prevented from developing a container terminal - forcing businesses north of Sydney to transport containers through Port Botany," opposition transport spokesperson Jodi McKay said in a joint statement with Newcastle MP Tim Crakanthorp.

Labor Leader Luke Foley has welcomed the news that the competition watchdog is now examining the secret deal that prevents Newcastle from developing a container terminal, an ALP statement said on Wednesday.