State Labor says a new shipping service between Townsville and Brisbane will be a priority if it remains in government after Saturday’s election.
It has also promised to commit $21 million over two years to create maritime jobs in a revitalised coastal shipping industry.
“Labor is backing the economic potential of Queensland’s 16 trading ports,” Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said.
He said Labor established a Maritime Jobs Taskforce earlier this year to investigate opportunities to grow the state’s maritime industry.
“Making better use of coastal shipping gives businesses more transport options and can improve road safety on the Bruce Highway and other regional roads,” Mr Bailey said.
“To do that, we will provide incentives to companies to establish a regular Brisbane to Townsville coastal shipping service using Queensland-based crews.
“A key part of our plan will be growing skills, through maritime cadetships and training, with $1 million to support additional training for Queenslanders to enter the industry or to upskill.”
Mr Bailey said a re-elected Palaszczuk Government would also prioritise land-side investments in equipment such as porter cranes at Queensland’s publicly owned ports.