We are incredibly proud of our client Barge Co for going the extra mile and securing a local ship builder to manufacture the barge base for what will be the world’s largest floating entertainment and eco-tourism venue if government approval can be achieved.
The family behind this innovative venture has a very long history in successfully managing and promoting Western Australian eco-tourism to the world and have invested an enormous amount of their personal time, money and energy doing all they can to ensure our great State benefits from this awesome project.
After more than three years of working through WA’s notoriously challenging approvals process we still don’t have government approval. However, to their credit, even without that certainty, Barge Co has continued to work on improving the outcomes for our great State – and this week, successfully negotiated with a local ship builder to build the only component that was previously thought to have had to be built overseas.
This means if the government is committed to activating WA’s tourism and hospitality sectors and allow Barge Co to prove its concept, Western Australia will not only be able to show off our amazing waterways to international tourists like no other jurisdiction in the world, but also benefit from the local manufacturing and hospitality jobs we will deliver.
Congratulations Barge Co – your commitment to innovation and Western Australia is second to none!
Here’s a media statement we distributed for Barge Co on this wonderful achievement:
Barge Co confirms 100% local manufacturing, jobs, eco-tourism and hospitality opportunities for WA if approval is granted
The proponent of what will be the world’s largest floating entertainment venue, Barge Co, has confirmed that negotiations with a Henderson-based shipbuilder have successfully concluded and the entire project would be manufactured in Western Australia, if state government conditional approval is granted.
Barge Co Managing Director Guy Mouritz said he was excited to have found a local manufacturer willing and able to undertake the work, previously believed to only be possible oversees.
“Barge Co is proudly West Australian,” Mr Mouritz said.
“Despite an exhausting and expensive bureaucratic process, we have persevered with trying to keep this project in WA because we are passionate supporters of eco-tourism in our great state.”
“We were genuinely excited when the McGowan Government was elected and promised to better support local manufacturing, local jobs, local tourism and local hospitality.”
“Up until now, we have been able to tick every one of the ‘local’ boxes other than the manufacture of the base of the specialist barge, which we had believed might have to be built oversees.”
“However, we are very pleased to announce that the venue will now be 100% locally manufactured – if we can secure conditional approval from the WA government ASAP.”
“Unfortunately, after jumping through hoops and trying to negotiate no end of red tape for the whole term of the last government, DPaW (now Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions) made a recommendation earlier this year to reject our world first in favour of a small party barge like those already operating in other States.”
“We have advised Minister Dawson that DPaW’s public recommendation contained many inaccurate assumptions and potentially damaging conclusions.”
“We then explicitly asked the Minister to do as he has many times before and provide conditional approval that would allow us to shore up investor confidence while getting on with proving the project can and will stay in WA.”
“It is difficult to maintain enthusiasm, but we are still hopeful the government will realise there is no risk in giving approval conditional to us scientifically proving that DPaW’s concerns are unwarranted,” Mr Mourtiz concluded.