Don’t let 15,000 jobs go down the drain


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$1.8billion of investment and 15,000 jobs – that’s the reality of getting a container terminal built at the Port of Newcastle.

With 28.8% of NSW containers originating in the Hunter and Northern NSW it is a vision that makes sense.

As the Committee for the Hunter noted “Benefits of this scale will only be realised if the penalties imposed on container movements at the Port are lifted. These penalties are currently subject to legal challenge in the Federal Court. Commencing development of the Multi-Purpose Deep Water Terminal MDT (and commitment from the private investors) is contingent upon the removal of these penalties”.

Yesterday the Port of Newcastle’s vision to build a container terminal hit a stumbling block when the ACCC lost that challenge in the Federal Court. You can read a more in depth analysis of that here:

We need more jobs in the Hunter region.
Industries can coexist.

We have an extraordinary agricultural industry. We have one of the best tourism areas in Australia and the highest of quality coal exports in the world right here in the Hunter. With more jobs in agriculture, mining, manufacturing, tourism, renewable and small business; our area will go from strength to strength. It is projects like the Port of Newcastle Container Terminal that help turn this vision of creating more diversified jobs into a reality.

Currently NSW imports and exports are trucked or sent via rail through Sydney. Newcastle’s proximity to major hubs makes it the ideal place for a container terminal. Much has been written about this and my concern is that yet again our region is being let down by the lack of vision for the long term.

Regardless of our politics we need a collective vision for our future where our kids don’t just get a job in the Hunter but land their dream job here.

As CEO of the Port of Newcastle Craig Carmody points out “The Port is ready to go. The Newcastle Multi-Purpose Deepwater Terminal will deliver more jobs in Regional NSW, a reduction in road and rail movements in and out of Sydney and cheaper freight costs for importers and exporters across the state. We have cost effective landside connectivity, interested shippers and a deep channel port operating at less than half capacity. With freight growth in NSW expected to double by 2040, a fully utilised Port with a world-class container terminal will provide efficiencies and competition to meet the future logistics and freight task.”

I urge the NSW Government to come to the table to ensure that this vital project goes ahead.

We need a long-term vision for the Hunter with projects starting today to turn this vision into reality.

We have been under-represented by voices who have failed to speak up for the jobs and future that the people in our region need.

It’s time we spoke up.

It’s time to back ourselves and our future.

Published by

James Thomson

Candidate for the Federal seat of Hunter at NSW Nationals