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Wednesday, 15 December 1993
Page: 4673

Senator COLSTON —My question is directed to the Minister for Transport and Communications. My question relates to Australian export markets and, in particular, whether such markets have been developed by the aviation industry. In this regard, can the minister advise the Senate of the extent to which this industry was represented at the recent Australian export awards? If the industry was well represented, can the minister provide details of the level of success of the aviation industry in establishing valuable export markets?

Senator COLLINS —Mr President—

Senator Ian Macdonald —Has the CAA finished rewriting its minutes yet?

Senator COLLINS —In response to that interjection, I think it is about time that Senator Macdonald started appreciating the fact that most Australians appreciate—that is that we have an aviation industry in Australia which is second to none in the world. It is now carving out a niche for itself by both developing and exporting world-class avionics systems. It is about time that Senator Macdonald and others stopped this nauseous Australian habit of bagging Australian industry and Australian initiatives. When the world recognises—

Senator McMullan —Senator Ian Macdonald!

Senator COLLINS —That is right, Senator Ian Macdonald. I thank Senator McMullan. I am pleased to advise the Senate that at the recent 1993 export awards the aviation industry was well represented. It was especially pleasing to see that the prestigious new exporter award went to Lochard Environmental Systems Pty Ltd, a Melbourne based firm. This was particularly pleasing as this company has been operating for only three years. The company produces an airport noise and flight track monitoring system which is currently operating at Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane airports. The system allows real-time recording of aircraft movement rates and noise levels in the vicinity of airports.

  The system, which is known as global environmental monitoring systems, has already been exported and installed at Manchester, Zurich, Amsterdam and Madrid airports. Only recently the company won a further contract to install the system at San Diego airport. Export orders for the company have increased from $60,000 a year only a few years ago to an anticipated $6 million this year.

  I can also inform the Senate that two other companies mentioned at the export awards were also aviation-related service companies: Static Engineering and the well-known Australian company, AWA Defence Industries. My colleague Senator Schacht mentioned in the chamber an example of Australian companies expanding into Asian export markets such as China. AWA is another company which, in September this year, won a $33 million export contract to export landing systems to 75 airports in China.

  Australia has also had the opportunity to become a leading provider of aviation training services. Australian flying schools are already successfully training pilots from countries such as Indonesia, Vietnam, Japan and Malaysia. In this regard, I understand that an organisation called Aviation Training Australia is being established by the industry itself in conjunction with Austrade and government organisations to promote Australia as a leading provider of aviation training as an export industry as well.