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New Customs and Border Protection patrol boat launched



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THE HON. JASON CLARE MP MINISTER FOR HOME AFFAIRS MINISTER FOR JUSTICE MINISTER FOR DEFENCE MATERIEL

MEDIA RELEASE

New Customs and Border Protection patrol boat launched

16 January 2012

Minister for Home Affairs and Minister for Justice Jason Clare today welcomed the launch of Australia’s first Cape Class patrol boat.

The Prime Minister announced in August 2011 that Austal had won a $350 million contract to build eight new patrol boats at their Henderson shipping yard in Western Australia. The first of these boats was launched in Henderson this month.

“The Cape Class patrol boats will be faster and bigger than our current Bay Class patrol boats - 58.1 metres long compared with the current vessels that are 38.2 metres long.” Mr Clare said.

“They will also have better surveillance and communications technology and will be capable of patrolling for 28 days at a time and travelling 4000 nautical miles before refuelling.”

The contract to construct the eight Cape Class vessels will support almost 450 jobs at Austal and up to 1,000 other local workers.

An official naming ceremony for the first boat will be held in March, once Austal has completed sea trials and testing to ensure it meets all necessary standards and requirements.

Following the naming ceremony the vessel will be transferred to Customs and Border Protection where it will be put through a five-month operational trial period.

“The new patrol boats will help protect Australia’s border from maritime threats like illegal fishing, piracy, marine pollution, irregular maritime arrivals and prohibited imports and exports.”

The full fleet of eight vessels is expected to be operational in late 2015.

Media contact: Ryan Hamilton - 0414 599 468