New life breathed into Newcastle maritime maintenance

Last week, the NSW government announced the funding for the renewal of the Fitzroy Street shipyard slipway to reactivate the Port of Newcastle and the Hunter as a major marine ship repair and maintenance precinct.

For this project, defence company Thales Australia will begin stage one of a phased redevelopment of the site, creating an additional 70 new jobs.

“This ship repair operation for a nationally significant facility will revitalise the Hunter’s proud maritime heritage and restore the Port as a maritime hub,” Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW, John Barilaro said.

“The slipway upgrade will allow the Port to handle bigger ships, attract skilled tradespeople back to the region and ensure naval maintenance work stays in NSW.”

Minister for Industry, Niall Blair, said Thales Australia’s plan closely aligns with the NSW Government’s Defence and Industry Strategy to build on NSW defence capabilities.

“This will be a major boost for our defence and industry sector. Thales expects to grow local sub-contractor industries to support its maritime operations in the region,” Mr Blair said.

“The Fitzroy Street site will support ship docking, repair and maintenance work as well as engineering, deeper level repairs and maintenance.”

Port of Newcastle CEO, Geoff Crowe, said the project will help grow and diversify the Port and build on its rich history of ship building and repair.

“The Port of Newcastle welcomes Thales’s expanded presence which fits well with our Port Development Plan and will benefit local skills, jobs and wider economy.”