MICK Kinley says facilitating industry recovery from COVID-19 will be a key focus of his next term at the helm of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority.
The federal government has just announced the reappointment of Mr Kinley as AMSA CEO for another four-years, continuing in the role to which he was first appointed in 2014.
Mr Kinley said he was honoured by the reappointment, but acknowledged the challenges caused by the virus.
“COVID-19 has brought some extraordinary challenges for Australian commercial vessel operators. Fishers are struggling to find markets to sell their catches, tour boat operators are without tourists and passenger vessels have been tied up at the wharf,” Mr Kinley said.
“Recovery will take years and my focus for the next four years will be finding where we can ease the regulatory burden on operators while continuing to improve safety,” he said.
“Recent container shipping incidents in Australian waters show there is always more work to do for AMSA in responding to life threatening situations, protecting our marine environment and upholding the international standards for shipping.”
Deputy Prime Minister and infrastructure minister Michael McCormack praised Mr Kinley for steering the organisation through the transition from state-based regulatory systems to a single national system.
“Mr Kinley has led AMSA at a very important time, as we work to ensure the national system for domestic commercial vessel safety delivers for industry,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.
“We want to see less red tape and better safety outcomes for what are inherently high risk operations.”
He said Mr Kinley had worked to ensure Australia’s interests were well represented at the International Maritime Organization.
MIAL CEO Teresa Lloyd congratulated Deputy PM McCormack on his decision to reappoint Mr Kinley.
“The last thing the maritime sector would need right now is significant change at our national regulator. Mick’s reappointment provides much needed continuity and ensures a safe pair of hands in these uncertain times,” Ms Lloyd said.
“We look forward to continuing our excellent cooperation with Mick and the entire team at AMSA as we tackle the regulatory and funding issues facing the domestic commercial vessel space and the ever increasing and complex international requirements.”