Aviation has played an essential role throughout this crisis, whether that be transporting essential workers, repatriating Australians stranded overseas, facilitating border closures and quarantine arrangements, or importing health supplies and other essential goods. Despite this, the Morrison Government still does not have a plan for the recovery of Australia’s aviation industry.
The Senate COVID Committee will today hear evidence from the Australian Airports Association that while their members are losing collectively around $300m a month they have received no direct Government assistance.
Australia’s aviation sector supports more than 206,000 jobs, and none of that would be possible without airports.
Whilst the travel restrictions and border closures have seen a dramatic drop-off in air-travel, our airports have been required to continue operating for essential freight and the small number of passengers still on the move. With few paying passengers, these significant costs have been borne by airports.
The situation is even worse for regional airports where the majority of staff have been left behind by Scott Morrison’s exclusion of council workers from JobKeeper payments.
With Canberra Airport recently announcing it will be closed entirely on Saturdays, and other airports facing similar issues, the Government must work with the entire aviation sector and develop a plan for Australia’s aviation sector, including airports.
Airlines, airports and unions are united in calling for a national aviation plan – the Prime Minister must listen.
THURSDAY, 20 AUGUST 2020