Government silent on Portland Aluminium

The Andrews Labor government is silent on one of the biggest issues facing the region, South West Coast MP Roma Britnell says.

The long term future of Portland Aluminium has again been in the headlines, but Mrs Britnell said the state government was doing little to address concerns the smelter could close.

Mrs Britnell has again in Parliament asked the Andrews Government to outline what steps it is taking to ensure the smelter remains a viable employer.

It’s the second time she has asked the question. The first question was answered well outside the timeframe required under Parliament rules by Treasurer Tim Pallas.

The Treasurer responded with a generic answer simply saying the government continued to engage on the matter and was “committed to jobs in Portland and in the regions”.

“The tardiness in answering the question shows just how low this issue is on the government’s agenda and again it seems the Government is only interested in talking about the problem, but not helping to solve it,” Mrs Britnell said.

“In Parliament on Tuesday, I asked the Minister for Industry and Employment Wade Noonan to outline what the government is doing to ensure Portland Aluminium remains viable so the 2000 jobs the smelter supports are secure.

“The minister has 30 days to answer, and I sincerely hope he can provide more detail than the Treasurer did.

“This is one of the most important issues facing this electorate. Labor says every job in Victoria worth fighting for. So far it seems that doesn’t apply to jobs in Portland and South West Coast.”

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