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Wednesday, 23 March 1994
Page: 2132

(Question No. 1069)

Senator Calvert asked the Minister for Immigration and Ethnic Affairs, upon notice, on 21 February 1994:

  (1) Why were 107 airfares purchased for travel between Darwin and Kupang.

  (2) What was the cost of purchasing these airfares.

  (3) Who travelled on these tickets.

  (4) When was the travel undertaken.

  (5) Why was the travel undertaken.

  (6) For what class were the tickets purchased.

  (7) What other costs are associated with the purchase of these airfares.

Senator Bolkus —I am advised that the answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

  (1) Senator Calvert's question is based on a gazette notice of 2 February which listed the purchase of airfares from Darwin to Kupang.

  I would like to correct one error in this gazette notice. The number of airfares purchased on 22 September 1993 was 37 and not 74. This brings the total number of airfares down from 107 to 70. An amendment to this Gazette notice is being prepared. The tickets were purchased to facilitate the removal of Indonesian fishermen.

  (2) Total cost was $14,610.00.

  (3) 70 Indonesian fishermen travelled on these airfares.

  (4) The travel was undertaken on the following dates:

  22 September 1993

  29 September 1993

  13 October 1993

  08 December 1993

  (5) Travel was undertaken in order to repatriate the Indonesian fishermen to their home country. This followed the prosecution of the captains of 10 boats and the forfeiture of catch, equipment and boats.

  (6) All tickets purchased were one-way economy class tickets.

  (7) There are no other costs associated with the purchase of these airfares incurred by DIEA.