The Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union (AMWU) has been campaigning for more than two years for a ‘continuous-build’ plan for Australia’s shipbuilding industry.
Today’s announcement that 12 Offshore Patrol Vessels are to be built in South Australia and Western Australia will be welcome by shipbuilders currently on the unemployment queue and others still in the industry but worried about losing their jobs.
“This announcement will ring hollow to the 1800 shipbuilders that have already lost their jobs since the Coalition came to power in 2013,” said AMWU Assistant National Secretary Glenn Thompson.
“1300 jobs are on the line at ASC in Adelaide and Malcolm Turnbull needs to give confidence to workers and the industry by finally accepting that a local build of 12 future submarines is the only responsible decision the Federal Government could make to secure our economy and our national security,” Mr Thompson said.
“Of course we are happy the Federal Government has been persuaded to accept our view that the Offshore Patrol Vessels need to be built in Australian shipyards and the sooner the better.”
“But we will continue to urge the Coalition to put an end to the option for an overseas or a hybrid build for the submarine project.”
“As far as the election is concerned, simply announcing that 12 subs will be built in Adelaide won’t wash with the electorate who heard that promise last time and then saw it broken.”
“If the Coalition wants to properly support the Navy, the shipbuilding industry and our skilled shipbuilding workforce it must make firm commitments to the submarine project and a local build before the election,” Mr Thompson said.
Media contact John Hill 0412197079
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