A private Whangārei ship repair company has been given a $4.8 million loan from the Government's Provincial Growth Fund.

Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones was on site today at Oceania Marine Group at Port Nikau to announce Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) support for a new 560-tonne travel lift for the company.

The new lift will better service the growing demand for refit and building services of workboats and superyachts and will help fund civil works at South Shipyard – including new piers, hardstand reinforcement and other works.

"The PGF will support this important investment with a loan of up to $4.8 million," Jones said.


The company already has a 400-tonne travel lift, but the larger lift will allow it to bring larger boats in for repair.

"Fifty new jobs and thirteen new apprenticeships are expected to be generated over the coming years as the new travel lift will increase Oceania Marine Group's revenue.

"It will also, in turn, create about 50 new jobs for support industries and boost the spending amount of the vessel crew,'' Jones said.

"An economic impact study commissioned by Northland Inc and NZTE showed the project would have a significant positive impact on both the Whangarei district and the New Zealand economy – exactly the sort of project we believe the PGF should be backing.''

He said the project strongly aligns with the objectives of the PGF and will help highlight marine manufacturing as a sector with strong comparative advantage in Northland.

"I'm proud that as a Government we're able to support businesses and achieve more for economic development, job creation and increased social wellbeing in our provinces," Jones said.

The announcement is the latest in a series of PGF funding announcements for Northland in the past year that have seen $80 million allocated for projects in the region.

A travel lift allows a boat to be taken out of the water and put on land for repair work to be undertaken.