The Andrews Labor Government today achieved financial close on the lease of the Port of Melbourne for more than $9.7 billion.
The lease delivers on the Government’s election promise to lease the port, remove 50 of our most deadly and congested level crossings, and create thousands of jobs.
Victoria’s regions will benefit too, with ten per cent of the lease proceeds being invested in regional and rural infrastructure projects.
In addition, a new $200 million Agriculture Infrastructure and Jobs Fund has also been established to drive economic growth in our regions, boost exports and support Victorian farmers from paddock to port.
The Government is still waiting for the Commonwealth to honour the additional 15 per cent that Victoria is entitled to under the Commonwealth’s asset recycling initiative.
The Lonsdale Consortium is now responsible for the port’s ongoing commercial operations for a term of 50 years.
The State will retain responsibility for the Harbour Master, Station Pier, relevant safety and environmental regulation, waterside emergency management and marine pollution response.
Lonsdale’s ongoing investment in the Port of Melbourne will consolidate the port’s position as the biggest container and cargo port in the country.
During the lease term, Lonsdale will maintain access to public walkways and bike paths for community use. Commercial and recreational vessel access will not be affected by the agreement, and the port will be returned to public hands at the end of the lease.
Quotes attributable to Treasurer Tim Pallas
“The lease of the Port of Melbourne is an outstanding achievement that underlines the continued high performance of the Victorian economy – the fastest growing in the country.”
“We promised to lease the port, get rid of Victoria’s most deadly and congested level crossings and create thousands of jobs, and that’s exactly what we are doing.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for Ports Luke Donnellan
“The ongoing development of the Port of Melbourne will enhance its reputation as the leading port in Australia.”
“The lease of the Port of Melbourne will deliver enduring economic benefits to all Victorians.”