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Monday, 4 May 1987
Page: 2215

Senator KNOWLES —I direct my question to the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Minister for Aviation. Will the Minister confirm that the Department of Transport has asked Skywest Airlines Pty Ltd, the previous coastal surveillance contractor, to continue the service until the end of September-that is, three months after the end of its present contract? If so, has Skywest agreed to provide a cover until the new operator, Amann Aviation, is ready to take over? Has Amann given a firm starting date? If Skywest is unable to fill the gap, does the Government plan to use the air force to ensure there is continuing surveillance of the vulnerable northern coastline?

Senator GIETZELT —I am afraid that I must advise Senator Knowles that I have no particular brief on that question. I will seek a view from the Minister.