NZ-based Stabicraft Marine boats will be tasked with halting drug traffickers on Australian shores after the company secured a federal government contract.
Customs officials said Stabicraft’s innovative design and build quality were key factors in awarding the contract.
“Stabicraft build excellent boats – what we’re after is a boat that will do the job but it has to be extremely safe and dependable and those are great features of the Stabicraft product.
“The boats will be able to stand up to the hard work and regular use that the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service subject them to.”
Stabicraft MD Paul Adams said while the contract was a coup, the Invercargill-based company was simply doing what it did best – building quality boats.
“We’re just doing what we do every day and living up to the high standards we set ourselves – and once again that’s been recognised on a global scale,” he said.
Each of the nine 659 Super Cab boats in the first Customs order had to meet stringent Australian survey requirements with inspectors travelling to New Zealand during various stages of construction.
Stabicraft Australian sales manager Leeon Johnston said construction was well underway on the initial order, which would be fitted out in Invercargill before being shipped to Australia.
“It’s great for a New Zealand company to secure a contract to build Australian federal boats and this has definitely been a real team effort on both sides of the Tasman,” he said.
The boats would be used in a variety of roles, mainly based around rivers and estuaries with limited off-shore work. The Australian Customs and Border Protection Service’s fleet included vessels up to 38m in length which could patrol 200 nautical miles offshore.