Media Release

2019: A year in review

Posted on
December 31, 2019

Concentrated focus on a sustainable future for the industry, connecting our region, and growing our friend-list, there’s been plenty keeping 2019 a busy one for Ports Australia and our members.

Ports and a Sustainable Australia was published in June through close collaboration with our membership, which explores the important work they’re doing as well as goal-setting vital to achieving a sustainable future for our industry. Our sector has the chance to be a leader in the battle against the many challenges of sustainability, which is why a new decade won’t see our attention waver. It’s essential we stay on the front foot and fight for change that will affect businesses, local communities and the world into the future.

As part of a mission to better-connect our region’s maritime industry, Ports Australia was fortunate to attend the 44th Pacific Maritime Transport Alliance conference earlier this year in Samoa. Our Policy Director, Ash Sinha took the chance to discuss various issues facing our industry. Since then, six ports from across the Pacific (Samoa, Fiji, Cook Islands, Solomon Islands, together with Lyttleton and Napier in New Zealand) have joined Ports Australia as external associate members. We’re excited for our local members’ new ability to share knowledge and experience with our new Pacific partners. As we continue building bridges between ports and service providers on home soil, we look forward to bringing our overseas partners and their unique industry knowledge to the table, which is vital as our region rapidly grows, both in freight and population.

Together with other industry leaders, our voice was loud all year as the biosecurity debate continues.  After sitting on the Biosecurity Imports Levy Industry Steering Committee, we’ve now been included on the Biosecurity Futures Group, and we hope our inclusion will help effect the change needed for our industry and country’s safety and efficiency.

This coming year, we must ensure reform on coastal shipping legislation maximises the potential of our Blue Highway and the opportunity to create jobs around the country. Figures show that while Australian freight has grown, the shipping industry’s share of that freight has dropped significantly. We plan on continuing our input to the conversation happening amongst government so we can shift those numbers and reflect the true potential of our industry as an efficient and sustainable way to move goods around the country.

October saw the announcement of our new Chair to Ports Australia’s Board of Directors. We loved congratulating new Chair, Stewart Lammin, CEO of Flinders Port Holdings, who – with over three decades experience in the sector – leaves no doubt that he is the man to lead the Board and management team into the future. That couldn’t be done however without acknowledging and congratulating former Chair, Grant Gilfillan, who has been an industry leader for decades, having invested time and effort into Port Authority of NSW, Ports Australia, and the sector.

The next year will see the team working harder than ever with our members and partners across the industry to ensure that the potential of Australia’s port sector becomes a reality. The population, freight task, and call for a sustainable future will all continue to grow in our country, and we can’t wait for our ports to grow with it.

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