Wednesday, March 23, 2022

What is Wrong with the English Speaking World's Merchant Fleet?

Here and on Midrats over the years we've discussed the embarrassingly dangerous maladministration of the US merchant fleet, but we're not alone.

We are putting a lot of emphasis on our growing partnership in security with Australia.

How are things down under?

Australia faces a “national emergency” unless it re-establishes a sovereign commercial shipping fleet to ensure critical goods flow during times of war and economic sanctions.

The war in Ukraine, alongside Canberra’s geopolitical tensions with Beijing, has highlighted the vulnerability of Australia’s security and economy given its supply chain is almost completely reliant on ships registered to other countries.

The Australian government was forced last week to ask a British ship set to bring in munitions for the defence force to replace Russian crew members.

The number of Australian-owned ships is set to wither to just nine by 2024, according to data from Maritime Industries Australia Limited, an industry association. That comprises six roll-on, roll-off ships used in the Bass Strait and three cement ships but no container ships or oil tankers. In the 1980s, the country boasted about 100 Australia-domiciled ships.

She is an island nation whose wealth relies on the sea. So does the USA.

Why then don't our national leaders act like it?

Is it myopia? Is it a corrupt donor class? Is it ignorance? 

What illness besets our nations?

h/t SW.

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