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Tuesday, 3 December 1935

Senator E B JOHNSTON asked the Minister representing the Minister for Defence, upon notice -

1.   Has the attention of the Minister been drawn to proceedings in the Legislative Assembly of Western Australia on the 12th instant, when the probability of the Royal Dutch Airways extending their service to Australia, via Wyndham, was discussed?

2.   ls it the intention of the Federal Government to equip properly the air port at Wyndham, and make it up to date for overseas aircraft?

3.   If so, when? :

4.   If not, why not?

Senator Sir GEORGE PEARCE - The Minister for Defence has supplied the following answers: -

1.   The Minister for Defence has received from the honorable senator a copy of the Votes and Proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of Western Australia for Tuesday, the 12th November, which indicates that the Western Australian Government has been in negotiation with Dutch Air Line Company, but his department has as yet no particulars of those negotiations nor any direct knowledge of the intention of the Royal Dutch Airways to extend their service to Australia. 2, 3 and 4. An aerodrome is available at Wyndham and this is of ample size for any type of aircraft under dry conditions. A runway for use under wet conditions is under construction, and sufficient of this is now completed to enable the aircraft used by the MacRobertson-Miller Aviation Company to operate from this ground during the forthcoming wet season.

The honorable senator is, of course, aware that the Government accepted the advice of an expert committee in adopting Darwin as the port of entry for the official air route to Australia, and pursuant to that decision hm provided at Darwin wireless and other facilities for the Timor Sea crossing. The Government has no present intention of incurring the considerable expenditure which would be involved in duplicating such facilities. -

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