Media Releases

COALITION FAILS TO LIST FLAWED COASTAL SHIPPING CHANGES FOR PARLIAMENTARY DEBATE

February 10, 2019

COALITION FAILS TO LIST FLAWED COASTAL SHIPPING CHANGES FOR PARLIAMENTARY DEBATE

The time has now come for the Federal Coalition to drop their flawed coastal shipping legislation that potentially threatens the jobs of hundreds of local seafarers according to the Federal Member for Braddon Justine Keay.

Justine Keay said, “The Coalition has again failed to list this proposed legislation for debate in the Senate for this week’s parliamentary sitting.

“With only two sitting weeks left until the next election either the Coalition is not serious about the proposed legislation or they are simply holding off in the vain hope they will have the numbers to have it passed after the next election.

“Either way they should drop this flawed policy as it is bad for local jobs and bad for local business.

“It makes no sense to replace secure local seafaring jobs with cheap overseas labour and it equally makes no economic sense for Tasmania’s domestic sea freight task being placed at the mercy of decisions in overseas boardrooms.

“On a number of occasions I have sought guarantees from the Coalition that Bass Strait would not be impacted upon their proposed legislation but none has ever been given.

“Local Liberal and National Senators and the Liberal Candidate for Braddon should join with Labor and support the abandonment of this flawed legislation.

“National Party Senator Steve Martin has previously been on the public record on this issue stating he “did not believe in getting in cheap foreign labour and losing Australian jobs.”

Justine Keay also said, “If Senator Martin and the rest of the Coalition were serious about protecting local jobs and supporting an Australian maritime industry they should adopt Labor’s policies in these areas.

“A Shorten Labor Government will;

 

  • Ensure that the national interest is prioritised when it comes to licensing foreign ships to work in Australia;
  • Stop the abuse of temporary licences that has occurred in breach of the existing legislation and;
  • Streamline regulatory processes where possible.

“Labor will also consider the establishment of a “strategic fleet”.
 

“This would support the creation of a fleet of vessels in areas of strategic importance to the Australian economy such as the importation and distribution of liquid fuel, namely crude oil, aviation fuel and diesel.
 
“The vessels would be Australian flagged and Australian crewed, and while they would operate commercially, they would be available to be seconded by the Defence Forces for operational requirements in times of crisis.
 
“They would also provide a platform for the training of future seafarers.
“Labor’s plan will secure our local maritime industry and it is time the Coalition came on board.”

SUNDAY 10 FEBRUARY 2019

MEDIA CONTACT:  JOHN DOWLING – 0417 575 148

 

Authorised by Noah Carroll, ALP, Canberra.