The AWU has welcomed the announcement by Prime Minister Rudd, during a visit to the Illawarra, that BlueScope Steel has won a $20 million contract to supply steel for three new Navy destroyers.
“This is a wonderful decision for the working people who live in the steel capital of Australia,” Paul Howes AWU National Secretary said.
“And it also has the effect of ensuring good jobs will be kept in Newcastle.
“This is an important first step but we have a long way to go if we are to protect steelworker jobs now facing the tsunami of the global economic crisis.”
The AWU’s Port Kembla Secretary, Andy Gillespie, commended the Rudd Government for supporting a procurement policy which ensured Australian Steel was used in the building of the three new Navy destroyers.
“Let’s hope we now see Canberra widening this procurement policy to make sure that we keep skilled workers gainfully employed in the steel industry,” Andy Gillespie said.