It is now time for Australia to plan our ports for an economic upturn.
Despite the global financial crisis impacting on our shores with container movements dropping 7.5 per cent and break bulk export values plummeting 75 per cent, bulk volumes were up by more than 22 per cent and exports have increased 1.8 per cent in the first quarter to March.
Australia towers above Japan, German, the US and Britain in trade terms, Assistant National Secretary Rick Newlyn told the WA Port Authorities Conference in Perth on June 25.
Australia’s unique position in the market provides an opportunity for the Rudd Government to focus on renewed national coordination of port development and better planning of transport infrastructure spending to develop a national ports strategy. And such a strategy should be built on the principles of cooperation collaboration and national coordination of port planning, port regulation and port competition. This strategic plan must include a shipping policy and a move back from FOB fleets to Australian flagged and crewed vessels for our key exports, the union argues
The union’s major industry analysis on port planning and development to the WA Ports Conference was well received sparking interest in the strategic focus of union thinking. It can be downloaded in full below