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Wednesday, 12 December 1973
Page: 2773

Senator LAWRIE (QUEENSLAND) asked the Minister representing the Minister for Transport, upon notice:

Why was approval given to the Australian National Line to have two bulk carriers built overseas, in view of the fact that Australian shipyards are short of work.

Senator Cavanagh - The Minister for Transport has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

The two bulk carriers to be built overseas by ANL are 12 1 , 250 metric tons d.w. Ships of at least this size are needed to give any teal prospect of viable operation in overseas bulk trading.

There is no Australian shipyard capable of building ships of this size.

Australian shipyards are not short of work. The order position is better at present than it has been for a number of years. As at 26 November there were 81 ships of various types and sizes on order or under construction and tenders had been called or had closed for a further 58 vessels. This compares with the situation as at 2 December 1 972 when there were 39 vessels on order or under construction and only 9 for which tenders had been called or had closed.

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