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Tuesday, 19 August 1980
Page: 20

Mr MILLAR (WIDE BAY, QUEENSLAND) - I direct my question to the Minister for Transport and draw his attention to an article that appeared in the Age on 16 August 1980 entitled 'Government gets tough on air fares'. Can the Minister confirm whether summonses have been issued against Sydney travel agents for alleged breaches of the air navigation regulations? Can he inform the House whether his Department intends to take any further action against travel agents, individuals or airlines involved in the air fare malpractice?

Mr HUNT (GWYDIR, NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for Transport) - I am aware of the article referred to by the honourable member. On 14 August summonses were issued against two travel agencies and three individuals involved in the marketing or selling of overseas travel. I do not wish to comment any further on these cases because undoubtedly the prosecutions will be proceeded with in the normal manner. I made it clear in a statement in this place on 23 April that, in the interests of equity for air travellers and in order to avoid discrimination against those law abiding airlines and travel agencies, illegal discounting of air travel would not be tolerated by this Government. I issue a further warning: My Department is actively investigating other possible breaches of the air navigation regulations. If any further cases come to the notice of those undertaking the investigations, further proceedings will be taken. I make it very clear to this House that those who are engaging in illegal discounting of overseas fares should cease doing so because they are putting themselves and their agencies at risk.

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