PORT COST BLOWOUT TO HIT BUSINESS AND CONSUMERS

Posted on 19. Jun, 2012 in News

The cost of redeveloping the Port of Melbourne has blown out by $400 million just two months after the Baillieu Government announced the redevelopment, Shadow Minister for Ports, Infrastructure and Major Projects Tim Pallas said today.

Mr Pallas said that on April 24, 2012 Mr Baillieu and Ports Minister Denis Napthine scrambled to announce the $1.2 billion redevelopment to cover the Government’s backflip on its promise to transfer the car trade to the Port of Geelong.

“This week’s announcement of another $400 million of debt on top of the $500 million for the Webb Dock redevelopment is further evidence the Baillieu Government doesn’t have a comprehensive strategy to grow the port,” Mr Pallas said.

“What Victorian importers and exporters need from the Baillieu Government is action – not more dithering, delays and procrastinating.

“Port users are already being hit with a massive tax introduced by the Baillieu Government and now the Ports Minister needs to explain if this blowout will cost businesses even more.

“This massive debt will inevitably be passed down the chain to those businesses accessing the port and eventually consumers.

“Victorian’s will not only be paying for the port redevelopment through their taxes but will also be hit with a second whammy when business is forced to pass on the extra costs.”

Mr Pallas said businesses would already be hit hard next month when the Baillieu Government’s Port Licence Fee begins.

“This Baillieu Government cost blowout is likely to put significant pressure on the competitiveness of the Port of Melbourne and its credit rating,” he said.

“It seems month after month Victorians discover new Baillieu Government broken promises, backflips, mega taxes and cost blowouts when it comes to developing Victoria’s ports and reducing the cost of business.

“Victorian importers and exporters need a government that provides them certainty, not one constantly moving the goal posts.”

 

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