Ports Australia welcomes funding for the port industry

There was confirmation of $0.6 million for the creation of a national action plan to reduce maritime emissions but Ports Australia has suggested more funding will be required to see the project through.  

Ports Australia CEO, Mike Gallacher has expressed his satisfaction with this announcement, stating that the Australian Government's initial investment in such a plan is a positive development.  

He also pointed out that the Australian maritime industry has already been actively working on reducing emissions and that the government will need to consider the efforts already made by ports, shipping lines, and other service providers. 

The Australian Government is also committing an additional $1.0 billion over 4 years from 2023–24 to meet its election commitment to strengthen Australia’s biosecurity system.  

Ports Australia look forward to further discussions with the Government on their undertakings to fund biosecurity for the future.   

Sustainable funding of our nation’s biosecurity measures needs to focus on those responsible for sending the potential risk to our shores. Whether its foreign car manufacturers leaving vehicles sitting idly in paddocks before shipment; overseas based exporters packing a container full of goods to send to Australia or individuals seeking to import into our country products such as meats, fruit, or vegetables. They are all seeking to profit from demand in the Australian market and they need to understand we all take the protection of Australian fauna and flora seriously, Mr Gallacher said.  

Ports Australia eagerly anticipates further information regarding these budget allocations.  

Download the media release for a breakdown of the Budget Line Items affecting Australia's Maritime Industry

Budget Line Items Impacting Australia’s Maritime Industry:

· $0.6 million in 2023–24 to develop a Maritime Emissions Reduction National Plan to facilitate the energy transition for the domestic maritime sector

· $1.2 million in 2023–24 to continue development of the Maritime Single Window project and deliver a business case to streamline reporting for Australian seaports

· TheGovernment will provide $164.8 million over 4 years from 2023–24 to establish enduring funding arrangements for AusCheck, providing funding stability for back ground checking and card issuing services, recovered through charging regulated sectors. AusCheck’s services will also be extended to the migration service industry through a strengthened ‘fit and proper person’ assessment forRegistered Migration Agents, subject to the passage of legislation. TheGovernment will also finalise arrangements for the transition to a singleGovernment issuing body for aviation and maritime security identification cards from 2025. Under this measure, the Government will introduce charges for background checks and card issuance for major events and biological hazard checks.Combined with updated existing charges, this measure is estimated to increase receipts by $164.9 million over 4 years from 2023–24.

· $46.5 million over 4 years from 2023–24 (and $11.8 million per year ongoing) to establish the Coordinator for Cyber Security to ensure that the Commonwealth’s cyber security efforts are strategic, coordinated, timely and effective. TheCoordinator will be supported by the National Office of Cyber Security and dedicated resources from within the Department of Home Affairs and otherCommonwealth entities, with capacity to surge further in the event of a cyber incident.

· $23.4 million over 3 years from 2023–24 to the Department of the Treasury for a small business cyber wardens program delivered by the Council of Small BusinessOrganisations Australia, to support small businesses to build in-house capability to protect against cyber threats.

· $19.5 million in 2023–24 to continue work to improve the security of critical infrastructure assets and assist owners and operators to respond to significant cyber-attacks.

· $12.2 million in 2023–24 to sustain cyber resilience of Commonwealth entities currently serviced by the Cyber Hubs pilot program and to continue assessment and certification of service providers used by the Commonwealth entities to host data.


The Government will provide an additional $1.0 billion over 4 years from 2023–24 (and $268.1 million per year ongoing) to meet its election commitment to strengthenAustralia’s biosecurity system. Funding includes:

· $845.0 million over 4 years from 2023–24 (and $255.3 million per year ongoing) to maintain biosecurity policy, operational and technical functions on a sustainable basis, including regulation, surveillance, domestic preparedness and response, and international engagement and capability development.

· $145.2 million over 3 years from 2023–24 to deliver modern digital systems in cargo pathways that are integrated with business systems, cut red tape and streamline regulation and service delivery for importers.

· $40.6 million over 4 years from 2023–24 (and $12.0 million per year ongoing) to continue the Indigenous Ranger Biosecurity Program to reduce biosecurity risks in Northern Australia and provide social and economic benefits to FirstNations, rural and remote communities.

The cost of the measure will be partially offset through introducing:

· Cost recovery arrangements for the clearance of low value imported cargo, which is expected to raise $81.3 million over 3 years from2024–25.

· A biosecurity protection levy on Australian producers of agricultural, forestry and fishery products from 1 July 2024, set at a rate equivalent to 10 per cent of the 2020–21 industry-led agricultural levies, which is estimated to increase receipts by $153.0 million over 3 years from2024–25. The levy recognises the benefits that primary producers derive fromAustralia’s biosecurity system, including detection, identification and response associated with invasive pests and diseases, maximising trade opportunities, and enhancing access to premium overseas markets.

· This measure builds on the 2022–23 October Budget measure titled Bolstering Australia’s Biosecurity System – protecting Australia from escalating exotic animal disease risks.