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Thursday, 22 May 1980
Page: 3230

Dr Klugman asked the Minister for Science and the Environment, upon notice, on 16 April 1980:

(   1 ) Will the Government make a decision concerning the purchase of an oceanographic research vessel in view of Australia's new 200 mile marine economic and the urgent need for comprehensive oceangraphic research; if so, when.

(2)   Even if ordered immediately, would an oceanographic research ship take approximately 2 years to build.

(3)   Will he recommend that any oceanographic research vessel be built in Australia.

Mr Thomson - The answers to the honourable member's questions are as follows:

(   1 ) In a press statement on 1 5 April 1 980 the Prime Minister advised that the Commonwealth Government is to establish a Marine Science Centre in Hobart at a cost of about $25m including $9m for a research vessel. The research vessel to be constructed would be capable of performing multi purpose oceanographic research and able to range around the Australian continent.

(2)   Yes.

(3)   Tenders will be called in October/November 1980 for the construction of an Oceanus class oceanographic research vessel both in Australia and overseas. All tenders received will be carefully considered prior to the placing of a firm contract.

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