Keep Australia Afloat

Save Our Shipping

Australian shipping is at the crossroads. The Turnbull Conservative Government is attacking Australian seafarers on multiple fronts:

Coastal Trading Act  - “WorkChoices on water”

The Turnbull Government wants to alter the Coastal Trading Act to open up and deregulate Australian ports and create “WorkChoices on water”. Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss has passed his legislation into the Lower House and the MUA lobbied for the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Legislative Committee to report back to the Senate on October 12, 2015. The amendment Bill is yet to appear in the Senate for debate. The current Coastal Trading Act, introduced by the former Labor Government with Anthony Albanese as the Transport Minister, protects Australian ports and Australia’s environment by granting preference to Australian vessels that allows them to carry passengers or cargo between domestic ports.The Act protects local Australian ships from Flag of Convenience (FOC) ships, with their poor standards and exploited crews, taking over our ports and displace Australian vessels.If protections are removed it will jeopardise maritime jobs, skills, fuel security, maritime security and the environment.The MUA will continue to talk to unions and the ACTU, the ALP, Greens and crossbench Senators to try to ensure that we keep our jobs and protect our industry. 

Fuel Security

The Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee report into Australia's transport energy resilience and sustainability was tabled 25 June 2015. The report found that found that Australia’s fuel security measures were not adequate and recommended the following:Recommendation 3: The committee recommends that the Australian Government develop and publish a comprehensive Transport Energy Plan directed to achieving a secure, affordable and sustainable transport energy supply. The plan should be developed following a public consultation process. Where appropriate, the plan should set targets for the secure supply of Australia's transport energy.

Australia is already down to four refineries and two Australian-crewed vessels carrying fuel around our coast, compared to eight refineries and 11 vessels in 1996.Australian refining and Australian shipping remain a vital part of ensuring Australia’s fuel security into the future and unless the Government does something, we are forecast to have no refineries and no Australian shipping.This places Australia completely at the mercy of foreign markets and we would have no insurance policy against any major supply shock – whether it be from a refinery fire in Singapore, a terrorist or piracy attack in the Straits of Malacca, or environmental tragedy on the Great Barrier Reef.



Our Coast. Our Fuel. Our Security.

Running concurrently with the wider shipping campaign the MUA also has a fuel security campaign to find out more go here.

The Facebook page for the same campaign is available here.

Campaign Material

To download, read and print material from the MUA's Shipping and Fuel Security Campaigns, click here.

DON'T LET ALCOA SINK AUSSIE SEAFARING: Sign This Petition Supporting the Crew of the MV Portland

Sign this important petition, showing PM Malcolm Turnbull that the crew of the MV Portland matter.

What is important to remember is that product carried by the MV Portland between Portland Victoria and Kwinana Western Australia is: 
Mined In Australia 
Refined in Australia 
Transported exclusively in Australia  
This is AUSTRALIAN COASTAL TRADE pure and simple. 

If these jobs aren't safeguarded, what job in Australia is safe? 

We need to back in our people and our skills, and ensure companies that profit from Australian wealth also support Aussie communities and people.

Email your MP

Latest News

Solidarity Message: Norsk Transportarbeiderforbund

Maritime Union Of Australia,

It is with great concern that we see crew members forcibly removed from MV Portland in disgaceful act by Alco.

How can Australian authorities accept such violations of legal rights and emerge as a democratic country, and still accept social dumping!

We encourage The Turnbull Government strongly to cancel the temporay licen Alcoa Immediately.

Alcoa behave similarly in Norway, in nearly two years, dockers in Mosjoen been subjected to "lock out" by Alcoa. The way Alcoa operat on must be stopped. The only way to do this is by following the national legislations opperated by the goverment and by international support and solidarity.

The Norwegian Transport Workes Union will support MUA in all leagal ways.
In solidarity.


Med vennlig hilsen

Terje R. Fenn Samuelsen
2. Nestleder
Norsk Transportarbeiderforbund

Yesterday's Coverage on Alcoa's Disgraceful Actions

Despite being a busy news day, Alcoa's actions still attracted some mainstream media coverage:


ITF Condemns MV Portland Seizure

The ITF (International Transport Workers’ Federation) today strongly condemned the raid early this morning (Wednesday) on the MV Portland in the Australian home port for which it is named. Up to 30 security guards were reportedly used to eject the five Australian crew members from the vessel and usher on a non-national crew, which then set sail for Singapore.


Crew Members Forcibly Removed from MV Portland in Disgraceful Act by Alcoa

Five crew members aboard Alcoa ship the MV Portland were woken at 1am this morning by up to 30 security guards, handed their passports and forcibly removed from the vessel.


60 Days and Counting

ITF President Paddy Crumlin said: “The ITF and international unions continue to show their solidarity with the workers on the front line at Portland because if it can happen to them it can happen to any of us.