Bid to check live ex­port ves­sel fails

The West Australian - - NEWS - Rueben Hale

The State Gov­ern­ment has taken the un­usual step of seek­ing to in­spect a live ex­port ves­sel in Fre­man­tle har­bour amid con­cerns that com­pa­nies are us­ing old and un­fit ships for voy­ages to the Mid­dle East.

The ac­tion led to a stand-off be­tween ex­porters and gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials, with live ex­porters claim­ing in­spec­tors were blocked be­cause they had no le­gal ju­ris­dic­tion.

A gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial was sent to in­spect Live­stock Ship­ping Ser­vices’ Bader III live­stock ves­sel as it pre­pared to leave for the Mid­dle East with a boat­load of sheep on Thurs­day.

Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter Alan­nah MacTier­nan said the of­fi­cial ar­rived “too late” and the gang­plank had been pulled up.

But the Aus­tralian Live­stock Ex­porters’ Coun­cil, speak­ing on be­half of LSS, said the of­fi­cial was blocked from board­ing be­cause the ves­sel was un­der Fed­eral ju­ris­dic­tion.

It comes as the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment re­views grand­fa­ther pro­vi­sions of ship­ping stan­dards that al­low older ves­sels to con­tinue car­ry­ing an­i­mals.

Last month, the Aus­tralian Mar­itime Safety Au­thor­ity tem­po­rar­ily banned the 36-year-old Al Mes­si­lah from live ex­port runs af­ter about 3000 sheep died en route to the Per­sian Gulf.

Ms MacTier­nan said she was hope­ful that, in the ab­sence of Barn­aby Joyce as Fed­eral Agri­cul­ture Min­is­ter, a sen­si­ble ap­proach to an­i­mal wel­fare stan­dards on live ex­port ships would hope­fully pre­vail.

“The in­dus­try has had more than 10 years to meet these ship­ping stan­dards and the grand­fa­ther­ing pro­vi­sions should now be re­moved,” she said. “We re­cently re­ceived ad­vice from the Solic­i­tor-Gen­eral that ap­pli­ca­tion of State an­i­mal wel­fare laws on live ex­port ships would not nec­es­sar­ily be in­con­sis­tent with Fed­eral laws.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.