Victorian Commercial Ports Strategy

The Victorian Government has released Navigating our Port Futures: The Victorian Commercial Ports Strategy (the Strategy) as a key response to the Independent Review of the Victorian Ports System, actioning the industry desire for a State-wide vision for the sector.

Navigating our Port Futures is supported by four strategic objectives and associated priority actions that will guide the State’s action over the next five years. Objectives and actions will be reviewed and updated every five years over the 30-year horizon of the Strategy. The Strategy’s objectives are for a ports system that is: 

Responsive to market demands – The Victorian Government has a key role supporting the ports system to accommodate Victoria’s rapidly growing freight task and will focus on: 

  • Supporting capacity growth at the Port of Melbourne 
  • Port of Hastings multi-use facility 
  • Station Pier and the future of Victoria’s cruise shipping, and 
  • Geelong channel optimisation. 

Well planned, balancing the needs of industry and the community – the Victorian Government will focus on setting the appropriate planning frameworks to protect ports and their transport corridors from sensitive-use encroachment while managing potential urban amenity impacts by: 

  • Enhancing Statutory Planning arrangements at our commercial ports 
  • Preparing commercial port landside access plans 
  • Delivering the next Port Development Strategies (PDSs) 
  • Planning protections for Bay West, and  
  • Conducting a review of land protected for development at the Port of Hastings 

Efficient, productive and resilient in changing global environment – Over the next five years the Victorian Government will develop key policy tools to support an efficient and effective ports system. Key actions include: 

  • Ports Victoria as a more active participant in the Victorian Ports System 
  • Building on the success of the Voluntary Port Performance Model (VPPM) 
  • Ports supporting Victoria to drive supply chains to net zero emissions 
  • Enabling an appropriately qualified and skilled workforce, and  
  • Responding to the Essential Service Commission’s Port of Melbourne Lease inquiries 

Safe and operated with clear roles and responsibilities – Over the next five years, the Victorian Government will focus on implementing the following key actions: 

  • Strengthening Ports Victoria’s role in State-wide navigational safety
  • Strengthening the maritime elements of the port Safety and Environment Management Plans (SEMPs)  
  • Implementing new licensing regimes for pilotage and towage, and  
  • Local ports and waterways reforms to improve marine asset planning and maintenance outcomes 

Navigating our Port Futures addresses a number of themes identified in the Independent Review of the Victorian Ports System including the establishment of Bay West, Geelong channel optimisation and commercial port land-use protection, as well as exploring trade and industry trends and network capacity impacting the sector. 

The Victorian Government’s 30-year strategy, vision and action plan position our ports system to grow and thrive. It is a significant step in delivering on the actions outlined in Victoria’s Freight Plan, as well as putting in place a pathway for the future of the Victorian ports sector.

Find out more by viewing the Navigating our Ports Future (summary report) (2 MB) and Victorian Commercial Ports Strategy (full report) (10 MB).

For more information visit the Ports Victoria website.