LNP leader Deb Frecklington has committed to build Northern Australia’s largest ship-lift in Cairns to help the city beat Darwin in the race for new jobs in the defence and marine industries.
Ms Frecklington said her party would invest $20 million in a syncrolift capable of lifting vessels of 5000-7000 tonnes for Cairns if it won the state election.
The ship-lift would give Cairns the capacity to land more defence contracts from the Federal Government’s investment in the Royal Australian Navy through Plan Galileo – as well as more commercial shipping maintenance work.
“Defence is about to boom and the LNP’s investment will ensure the Far North gets its fair share of the new jobs that the Morrison Federal Government is creating,” Ms Frecklington said.
“This $20 million ship-lift will give Cairns the pulling power to land Navy and civilian maintenance work which will secure 6000 local manufacturing jobs and create many more.”
The LNP would form a commercial partnership with the Cairns marine industry to deliver the project, with the State Government funding the ship-lift and its partners funding the civil works and other equipment.
The State Labor Government last month unveiled plans for a $30 million boost to help Port of Cairns build two new wharves and advance the case for further growth as a defence vessel maintenance and shipbuilding hub.