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Record $1.4 billion spent on illegal boats in 2012/12

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Michael Keenan MP - Federal Member for Stirling RECORD $1.4 BILLION SPENT ON ILLEGAL BOATS IN 2011/12 October 13, 2012

The arrival of another illegal boat, with 188 people on board, reflects the growing chaos on our borders and comes as Labor’s failed border protection policies have resulted in a record $1.4 billion bill for illegal boat arrivals in 2011/12, figures released in the Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s annual report reveal.

Mr Morrison is currently in Jakarta, to discuss immigration and border protection issues and the need to keep a strong regional and domestic focus on deterrence measures to combat people smuggling, especially through the Bali Process.

“The DIAC annual report also reveals a fresh blow out in their budget of $296 million, including $225 million on illegal boats, run up in just a six week period,” Mr Morrison said.

“Labor continues to throw taxpayers money at their failure on our borders. This latest blow out of $296 million means a record $1.4 billion was spent on illegal boat arrivals by Labor in 2011/12 and there’s more to come, with arrivals for 2012/13 already well over 1,000 more than what was estimated for the entire financial year.

“In 2011/12 Labor’s record spending on their border protection failure meant every boat that arrived cost taxpayers $12.8 million, or over $172,700 for every person on board.

“Taxpayers were forced to fork out $18 million to pay for legal advice for boat arrivals, or around $2,625 for every person who received legal services.

“This reckless spending is the result when governments fail on our borders to the extent that Labor has for the last four years, and the bad news for taxpayers is that there are more blowouts on the way courtesy of Julia Gillard.

“The start of this financial year has seen record months of illegal boat arrivals and there is already a record detention population of almost 9,500 people, with thousands more boat arrivals in the community.

“The appalling figures revealed in DIAC’s annual report are costing Australian taxpayers as well as our border integrity dearly and only reinforces the need for single minded policies on deterrence regionally and domestically that the Coalition has long argued for and practiced,” Mr Morrison said.

Mr Keenan said: “At a point when Labor's management of our borders has hit an all time low, the people smugglers have sent another illegal boat to test the Government's resolve on the protection of Australia's borders.

“This latest boat carrying 188 people is a testament of the faith the people smugglers have in their product which has proven to be extremely lucrative under Labor.

“26,855 people on 454 boats have now arrived under this Labor Government with no sign of this abating any time soon while the Prime Minister is consumed with slinging mud rather than running the country.

“2012 has undoubtedly been the year of the people smuggler, with 12,201 people arriving on 182 illegal boats - Labor is far too distracted to fix this problem of their own making, only the Coalition has the resolve to restore integrity and strength to out borders,” Mr Keenan said.

© Authorised by Michael Keenan MP, 203 Wanneroo Road, Tuart Hill WA 6060

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