Labor to establish ‘strategic shipping fleet’ over economic and security concerns – Sydney Morning Herald

A Labor government would move to establish a “strategic shipping fleet” in a bid to address economic and security concerns about Australia’s high dependence on foreign-flagged vessels.

If elected in May, Labor would seek to create the fleet to bolster the local maritime workforce and secure critically important supplies in times of crisis.

Labor wants to boost the number of Australian-flagged vessels.

Labor wants to boost the number of Australian-flagged vessels. Credit:Bloomberg

“It is a national disgrace that an island nation like Australia only has 14 flagged vessels, and it’s in our national interest to fix this,” Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said in a statement.

“I am determined to revive shipping in this country. I will not let the Liberals and Nationals do to shipping what they have done to the car industry in Australia. It is important for jobs, it is important for our economy, and it’s crucial for our national security. An island nation like Australia should have its own shipping fleet.”

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