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Thursday, 27 November 1986
Page: 2923


Senator GRIMES (Minister for Community Services)(8.37) —I am the last one in this place who would pretend that he is an expert on aeroplanes of any kind. I am informed that the primary reasons for choosing the PC9 trainer over the PC7 was that it did what the Air Force wanted it to do and there were better prospects for Australian industry. I am informed that it is not true that another primary trainer will necessarily be needed. An assessment is being made about the training regimes that will be used, but that does not mean that another primary trainer will be necessary.

I am also informed that the article is not accurate and that the performance of the PC9 will not be compromised by the changes which, it is admitted, will have to be made to the undercarriage. I understand that Mr Beazley has offered the honourable senator a specific briefing on the PC9. I do not know whether he has taken it up. I might go along with him. I cannot give the honourable senator any more details than that. I will certainly seek more details so that they are on the record in the Hansard.