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Ports reviewed

THE Federal Government has supported the Productivity Commission’s recent findings that there is scope for more cost-effective towage services in Australia’s ports.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Transport and Regional Services, John Anderson, said he accepted the recommendations.

“However, if there is to be competitive tendering by port authorities for harbour towage ... it is essential that my State and Territory counterparts put in place the necessary safeguards to ensure the integrity of the process,” Mr Anderson said.

Other recommendations included the non-renewal of ‘declared’ services, which expired under the Price Surveillance Act on September 19 2002, and the limited monitoring of harbour towage charges.

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