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The Howard Government's Record: The Howard Government’s record on shipping.

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The Howard Government’s record on


The Howard Government has systematically destroyed the Australian shipping industry. It has openly encouraged the cheapest ships in the world to ply the Australian coast. These ships are able to undercut Australian vessels through low wages paid to crews, subsidies from foreign governments and the fact that they sit outside Australian law.

Many of these ships operate in Australia with poor maintenance, low wages, sub-standard conditions for crews and no regard for environmental or other standards. In the pursuit of cheap shipping rates, the Howard Government pays no regard to Australian jobs, the welfare of seafarers, the safety of others navigating Australian waters, or the protection of our precious coastal environment.

In many cases these ships are manned by crews from countries included in Mr Howard’s “arc of instability” and they are permitted to carry dangerous goods like fertiliser around the coast, often at the expense of the Australian industry.

By running down the Australian shipping industry the Howard Government has also eroded our fourth line of defence. The Howard Government has ignored the sacrifice merchant seafarers have traditionally made to keep Australia’s coast safe and our sea lanes open.

Printed and authorised by Tim Gartrell, 19 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600