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Thursday, 29 October 2009
Page: 7736

Senator Cash asked the Minister representing the Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, upon notice, on 15 September 2009:

With reference to the Australian National Audit Office audit report no. 8 of 2006-07, Airservices Australia’s upper airspace management contracts with the Solomon Islands Government: (a) what action has been taken to comply with recommendations nos 1 to 4; (b) what additional costs will be involved in implementing each recommendation; and (c) was any additional funding sought in subsequent budgets for any additional costs to be incurred in implementing each recommendation; if so, how much.

Senator Conroy (Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy) —The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government has provided the following answer to the honourable senator’s question:

Airservices Australia has advised the following:

(a)   Recommendation 1 - Airservices and the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government have discussed and resolved inconsistencies in their understanding on this matter. Recommendations 2 and 3 relate to actions Airservices should undertake prior to entering into future contracts. Airservices has not entered into any such contracts since the audit and none are currently intended. The organisation has however, consistent with the recommendations of the audit, substantially improved the governance of overseas contracts since the time of the audit. Recommendation 4 - Airservices has obtained assurance from the Solomon Islands Government that the manner in which payments are made is compliant with the Solomon Islands Constitution. The Australian National Audit Office has conducted a follow-up audit of Airservices’ implementation of these recommendations, with the resulting report expected to be tabled in the 2009 Spring sitting of Parliament.

(b)   Nil.

(c)   No.