Leader of the Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party The Hon. Robert Borsak MLC acknowledged the Australian Government on their recent announcement of taking advantage of record low oil prices to purchase additional fuel reserves, but regions are key to providing safe and secure infrastructure to store our critical fuel assets.

“If we’ve learned anything in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic it’s that anything can suddenly happen, and without warning,” Said Mr Borsak

“Australia only ever has about 3 weeks of fuel supplies at any given time and if there were any interruption to that supply, our economy and society wouldn’t just slow down as it is now, it would come to a complete stop.  

“I want to recognise the Australian Government for their decision to purchase additional fuel reserves when oil is at an all-time low, it’s a smart move, but to capitalise on this opportunity we need those barrels here, not sitting in a foreign country.”

“To maximise the potential of this opportunistic purchase is to increase our on-shore storage instead of overseas which is Government’s current plan. It’s the transport of fuel to Australia and any logistical lag that threatens our fuel supplies.

“Buying fuel that’s kept in storage on the other side of the planet, out of our control, does nothing to remove our vulnerability of supply, it just ensures ownership. We need to fast-track construction of fuel reservoirs here so that the fuel is on hand if ever it is needed.

“Australia is a vast country and we are all separated by long distances. We’re still reliant on fuel to transport us and our essentials. Without fuel our industries would all cease production and the nation would come to a grinding halt.  

“Only three weeks of fuel reserves stands between order and chaos for our economy and our society. We can capitalise on this record opportunity to extend onshore fuel reserves where such a strategic asset can be safely stored underground in the regional areas of New South Wales.

“Security of critical assets and infrastructure has always been a key concern and the regions possess safe and accessible positioning for such a strategic fuel reserve.

“Western New South Wales possesses geographical attributes and transport infrastructure which would benefit the placement of a safe and secure fuel storage facility to extend our onshore reserves, while providing local employment opportunities to a region which has suffered enormous financial impact from drought and now the pandemic.” Mr Borsak said.