Western Australia puts Fremantle Port up for sale

17 May 2015 (Last Updated May 17th, 2015 18:30)

The Government of Western Australia is selling Fremantle Port in order to retire debts and fund new major projects.

The Government of Western Australia is selling Fremantle Port in order to retire debts and fund new major projects.

The plan was announced by Premier Colin Barnett and Treasurer Mike Nahan as part of a second tranche of asset sales in the latest State Budget.

Barnett said: "The decision to pursue a sensible programme of further asset sales will enable the government to build new infrastructure to support future growth without putting further pressure on the state’s finances."

"The decision to pursue a sensible programme of further asset sales will enable the government to build new infrastructure to support future growth."

According to Nahan, the 2014 to 2015 budget showed a projected general government operating at a deficit of $1.3bn, which would fall to $788m when the $499m contribution for road infrastructure came through to the state.

Nahan said: "This is a good outcome for Western Australia.

"We will build the Forrestfield line, we will get the rolling stock and we will reduce debt."

Meanwhile, the government has introduced new revenue and cost-cutting measures to reap net debt savings of $1.3bn over the next four years.

Fremantle Port generated A$67m ($53.78m) in earnings before interest and taxation from more than A$28bn ($16.05bn) worth of goods traded through the port in 2014 financial year, IHS Maritime reported.

Last year, the Western Australian Government announced the sale of Kwinana Bulk Terminal and Utah Point Terminal, and the privatisation of Port Hedland.