The Hon Christopher Pyne, Minister for Defence Industry
Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP and Federal Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch today announced the delivery of the Coalition’s election commitment to provide $24 million toward the upgrade of the Cairns Marine Precinct.
The Cairns Marine Precinct provides vital facilities and support services to our Defence Force whilst providing a critical contribution to the local economy and local jobs.
Agreements have now been signed with Norship Marine, BSE Cairns Slipways and Tropical Reef Shipyard with funding now to flow from the Government to undertake a variety of works to increase the capability and capacity of the existing shipyards.
Minister Pyne said the projects will include over 170m of wharf construction, upgrades to electrical and fire systems, workshop construction, security systems, hardstand resurfacing and construction of an additional 135m of slipway rail.
“Cairns provides vital facilities and support services to the Australian Defence Force, and this upgrade work will mean they are well placed to keep doing so into the future” said Minister Pyne.
“More than $400 million of maintenance work on the replacement fleet of up to 21 Pacific Patrol Boards will be conducted here,” he said.
Mr Entsch said the delivery of this commitment will ensure Cairns is well placed to secure additional maintenance and sustainment work for commercial customers and the Royal Australian Navy.
“Over 1,300 people are employed in the shipbuilding, repair and service sectors in the region,” said Mr Entsch.
“This work will sustain immediate construction jobs, and also long term shipbuilding and maintenance work right here in Cairns,” he said.
This $24 million investment is in addition to the Turnbull Government’s $420 million investment to develop additional wharf space and other support facilities at HMAS Cairns.
While the Government is investing in the upgrades, the works themselves will be managed by the shipyards involved.