Clive Brown

Clive Brown

Former Minister for State Development

Geoff Gallop

Geoff Gallop

Former Premier; Minister for Public Sector Management; Water Resources; Federal Affairs

    Premier commits $65million to develop a world-class defence shipbuilding hub

    8/12/2004 12:30 PM

    The Gallop Government has launched an ambitious $65million strategy to develop a world-class defence shipbuilding hub in Western Australia.

    Premier Geoff Gallop and State Development Minister Clive Brown launched the strategy in front of more than 100 industry and Government representatives at Perth’s Australian Marine Complex (AMC) today.

    Dr Gallop said the WA Defence Shipbuilding Strategy was particularly aimed at helping WA industry win the Royal Australian Navy’s $2billion amphibious vessel contract, which would create up to 2,000 highly technical and manufacturing based jobs in WA.

    The strategy included four core initiatives:
    • a Memorandum of Understanding with South Australia, which promotes a co-operative approach in vying for the new work;
    • $60million to develop common user infrastructure to enable the amphibious vessels to be consolidated in Western Australia. This infrastructure would be developed on the condition that a WA bid to consolidate the vessels in WA was successful;
    • $5million for LandCorp to build a second common user fabrication shed at the AMC; and
    • the engagement of a former senior naval representative to champion the State’s interests and optimally position the local defence and shipbuilding industry.
    “The Gallop Government is serious about WA becoming a world-class defence shipbuilding hub and we are putting our money where our mouth is to achieve this goal,” the Premier said.

    “We want defence ship-building jobs here in WA and we will stand should to shoulder with industry in an effort to win the amphibious vessel contract.”

    Dr Gallop said the Government’s strong financial management had enabled it to commit to the infrastructure necessary to grow the economy and create jobs and opportunities throughout the State.

    “Since coming to office, the Gallop Government has invested in a record capital works program, including $279million to expand the exporting capacities of our ports, $183million for common user infrastructure on the Burrup Peninsula and $24million to support a local workforce at the Ravensthorpe nickel project,” he said.

    “And, importantly, we have been able to do this and achieve record low unemployment without the need for privatisation.”

    Mr Brown said the WA Defence Shipbuilding Strategy built upon other Gallop Government initiatives aimed at developing the shipbuilding industry, which included:
    • providing a $3million grant to attract Raytheon Australia’s Naval Systems Division headquarters to the AMC Technology Precinct, creating 165 full-time jobs;
    • successfully lobbying for a $380million contract to build 15 patrol boats for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), creating 450 full-time jobs;
    • establishing a Manufacturing Council with industry and the union movement, with a focus on defence shipbuilding;
    • developing and funding a marketing campaign for the AMC; and
    • leading a series of international trade missions promoting WA’s shipbuilding capacities.
    Mr Brown said it was vital for the long-term future of the State’s economy that highly skilled and manufacturing based industries were developed, while WA enjoyed the benefits of a resources industry-driven economic expansion.

    “WA has a once in 40 years’ opportunity to diversify our economy and secure long-term economic and employment growth,” he said.

    “By clustering technical and manufacturing based jobs at the AMC, we are likely to see new opportunities emerge and our competitiveness in bidding for new work improve dramatically.

    “The WA Defence Shipbuilding Strategy is a significant moment for our manufacturing industry and I wish all WA bids well in bringing these much sought after jobs to WA.”

    Minister for State Development's office: 9222 9699