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Thursday, 14 June 1984
Page: 3004


Senator TATE(12.23) —I make a very brief comment in relation to a matter that was raised in earlier discussion. A claim was made on the other side of the chamber that there was a lack of expertise in the management of Trans Australia Airlines, particularly in relation to the replacement of aircraft. Ever since TAA's inception it has been recognised by those connected with airlines and the aircraft industry that TAA has, in many instances, set the pace with its innovative and sensible introduction of new aircraft types into Australia for the benefit of airline travellers.

I think that its replacement program, when one looks at it since its inception, reflects very creditably on the management of those involved in the devising of replacement programs within TAA. It is true that the introduction of the Airbus, which was predicated on a very modest and moderate increase in airline traffic, coincided with the very dramatic downturn in the airline industry throughout Australia coincident with and part and parcel of the downturn in economic activity generally. That was an unfortunate coincidence in the introduction of that aircraft into that situation.

I believe it ought to be said just by way of some balance that in general the replacement program pursued by the TAA management has been to the great benefit of airline passengers throughout Australia and, in my view, reflects credit on the TAA management.

Bills agreed to.

Bills reported without amendment; report adopted.