Annastacia Palaszczuk and the Queensland Government are demonstrating the clear national leadership needed to support our aviation industry through the Covid-19 crisis.
Queensland’s approach stands in stark contrast to Scott Morrison whose piecemeal approach to aviation is putting tens of thousands of jobs at risk.
Our aviation industry has been brought to its knees by necessary travel restrictions imposed by governments to limit the spread of this disease.
Scott Morrison must provide a lifeline to Virgin through extending or guaranteeing lines of credit and taking an equity stake.
Such an intervention will give the Government the temporary ability to support the airline through this crisis before the industry bounces back – and it will – when the Government can recoup its investment.
Inaction by the Prime Minister is an active decision to see one of our major airlines fail.
Such a result will see 16,000 jobs lost overnight and will have a devastating impact on our tourism, freight and services sectors.
Scott Morrison says he will only take a sector-wide approach to aviation but his Government has allocated $100 million in cash grants that only regional airlines, including majority foreign-owned Regional Express, can apply for.
Instead of this political double speak, Scott Morrison needs to urgently provide a lifeline to Virgin and ensure our entire aviation industry survives this crisis.
Giving up on Australia’s aviation industry is not an option for Labor.