The Federal Labor Government's landmark shipping
reforms, which commence today, include the establishment of
an Australian International Shipping Register (AISR)-an
The AISR is designed to promote investment in
Australia's involvement in international shipping. 99.9
per cent of Australia's cargo trade is moved by ships,
making it the 4th largest shipping task in the world and
yet, Australia has only 4 international trading vessels.
The Government's view is that a competitive and growing
domestic shipping industry is in Australia's long term
From today, companies which place vessels on the AISR will
receive the government's zero tax rate, the seafarer
tax exemption (where companies do not have to pay employee
income tax) and other fiscal incentives in the
government's shipping reform package, including:
provision for accelerated depreciation of vessels via a
cap of 10 years to the effective life of those
rollover relief from income tax on the sale of a vessel;
an exemption from royalty withholding tax for payments
made for the lease of a shipping vessel.
In addition to reducing the cost of owning and operating an
Australian ship, under the government's shipping
reforms AISR vessels on international voyages will pay
international wages and conditions as set by the
International Transport Federation. AISR vessels will be
able to hire foreign seafarers; though the master and chief
engineer have to be Australian.
Together, these tax arrangements ensure investment in
Australian shipping will continue.
The combination of a zero tax rate and internationally
competitive employment conditions means AISR vessels can
compete on an equal playing field with international ships,
without reducing Australia's enviable maritime safety
The government's creation of an AISR means we will see
Australian ships with an Australian flag on the back
working in the great ports of the world, something that all
Australians can take great pride in.