Sale of the port not in the public interest: Maritime union

COST shifting by port operators will impact on everyone, according to the Maritime Union of Australia, which has signalled it will campaign against the privatisation of the Port of Gladstone.

The MUA said the sale of the port was not in the public interest, and lessons should have been learned from the experience of the Port of Brisbane.

MUA Qld branch acting secretary, Trevor Munday said the union had real concerns regarding any proposed 99 year leases for other Qld ports.

"We will see cost shifting by port operators that will impact on potentially all Queenslanders," he said.

"The ultimate result will be that with exports, businesses which export commodities will pay more.

"Perhaps more alarmingly, in relation to imports, then consumers - pretty much all of us - will ultimately pay more."

Mr Munday said privatisation without plausible explanation arguably caused the demise of the last state government.

"The Maritime Union believes that the public interest test has not been met with regards to Gladstone and Townsville and the Qld Government has failed to provide sufficient rationale for why these sales need to happen," he said.

"The union is determined to fight these changes and we are confident that community sentiment in North Queensland is aligned with our concerns."

The State Government has not made a decision on the Strong Choices it will make as part of reducing the $80 million in debt.



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