Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union



OCTOBER 28, 2021 – It’s been revealed the Federal Government are dumping another ship build in Western Australia - a decision it made in secret, behind closed doors. 

It was revealed at Senate estimates the government would be quietly dumping a longstanding commitment to building a large-hulled vessel in Western Australia, a vessel that would be used for Defence’s support efforts in the Pacific. 

Estimates heard the vessel would be bought overseas, a decision the government failed to make public, nor inform workers and their unions, the Australian Shipbuilding Federation of Unions. 

The ASFU say the decision sends shockwaves through the shipbuilding community as it comes off the back of the dramatic dumping of the French subs deal with Naval Group. 

A pattern of sending shipbuilding contracts offshore:  

  • 2016 – Spanish shipbuilder Navantia awarded contract to build two supply ships for Australian Navy, worth $1.2bn and 3,000 jobs. 
  • 2017 – Dutch/Romanian shipbuilder Damen Group given contract to build Australia’s Antarctic icebreaker RSV Nuyina 

Quotes attributable to ASFU National Convenor Glenn Thompson 

“This government is shameless, and it is reckless – it’s persistently sending shipbuilding work overseas, selling out shipbuilding workers in this country for the cheapest deal it can secure overseas. 

“I’ve almost lost count of the number of times the government has decided to dump its commitments to shipbuilding workers. 

“We need a different kind of anti-dumping legislation in this country – to stop the pattern of this government dumping every commitment it has made to build ships in Australia. 

“Enough is enough, when will this government support working people in this country and stand up for good secure jobs.” 

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