The New South Wales Transport minister David Campbell has denied a report saying that higher costs due to traffic delays in Sydney are driving businesses out of the city.

Campbell said the Road and Traffic Authority (RTA) figures show traffic congestion in Sydney has remained steady for 20 years, according to The Sydney Morning Herald.

In the past 18 years, traffic in major roads in Sydney has increased by 46%, but travel times have remained steady, Campbell said in an interview to Fairfax Radio.

In the National Roads and Motorists’ Association’s (NRMA) survey of 382 business customers, 82% said road congestion in Sydney has worsened over the past 12 months.

In the report, 42% said road congestion has increased additional costs up to $10,000, while 60% said they had to change staff shift times to start late and finish early to avoid traffic.

Most worryingly, 10% of businesses said they had to move locations outside the city to escape congestion.