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  • The latest data from Deloitte Access Economics says Australia’s marine industry grew 28 per cent in two years
  • The Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) Index of Marine Industry report claims the industry contributes over $80 billion a year to the economy
  • This is more than the agricultural, coal mining, and heavy and civil engineering construction sectors contributed in 2017-18
  • Offshore natural gas production, shipbuilding and repairs, and marine tourism helped drive the marine industry growth
  • The latest AIMS report, however, covers the time period before the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the Australian economy

The industry that contributes more than $80 billion a year to Australia’s economy grew by 28 per cent in two years, the Department of Industry, Science, Energy, and Resources said.

Australia’s marine industry is continuing to flourish, according to the latest biannual update from Deloitte Access economics commissioned by the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS).

The AIMS Index of Marine Industry report found offshore natural gas production, shipbuilding and repairs, and marine tourism helped drive this growth. These segments of Australia’s marine industry grew 79 per cent, 57 per cent, and 11 per cent, respectively, over the two-year period.

Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries and for Industry Development Jonno Duniam said Australia’s marine industry is one of the most important and fastest-growing parts of the nation’s economy.

“The value of Australia’s marine industry increased by more than a quarter between 2015-16 and 2017-18, and has seen a four-fold increase over the past two decades,” Assistant Minister Duniam said.

“To put that into perspective, our $81.2 billion blue economy produced more than the agricultural sector ($58.9 billion), coal mining ($69.7 billion) and heavy and civil engineering construction ($68.5 billion) in 2017-18.”

Aquaculture and fishing helped contribute to the growth, while the marine sector as a whole contributed almost 340,000 full-time workers over the two-year period, according to the AIMS report.

AIMS Chief Executive Paul Hardisty said the scientific research conducted by the organisation has contributed to the sustainable productivity of many marine industries, while at the same time helping protect Australia’s oceans.

“Marine-based industries build economic value, create employment, and improve people’s livelihoods,” Dr Hardisty said.

The latest AIMS report, however, covers the time period before the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the Australian economy. The COVID-related stats will only be published in the 2022 AIMS Index of Marine Industry report.

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