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Tuesday, 22 May 1973
Page: 2410

Mr NIXON (Gippsland) - I move:

(1)   Omit sub-section (1) of proposed section 19, substitute the following sub-section:

(1)   The functions of the Commission are -

(a)   to transport passengers and goods for reward by air between prescribed places; and

(b)   within the limits of its powers under this Act or any relevant State Act, to transport passengers and goods for reward by air or in association with its powers in this section and, within those limits, to provide land transport accommodation, and other services and facilities associated with the exercise of its powers under paragraph (a), and the Commission shall carry on business for the purpose of performing those functions.'.

Proposed new section 19, as contained in the Bill, would give Trans-Australia Airlines full and unlimited powers to operate as a road transport commission. There is no suggestion that its powers to engage in surface transport arc to be related to its air transport activities. What is important about the Government's proposed provision is that what are referred to therein are not activities in which the Australian National Airlines Commission is empowered to engage. They are presented, in the legislation, as functions of the Commission. The amendment limits the transportation functions of the Commission to its airline activities. Its other activities must be associated with the exercise of its airline function. My view is that the amendment meets the spirit of what was proposed by the previous Government and, as the Minister for Civil

Aviation (Mr Charles Jones) claims that the Bill fulfils the purposes of the previous Government, the amendment should be accepted. If the Minister is genuine in his view - he stated in his second-reading speech that there is agreement between the Opposition and the Government on what was agreed to prior to the last elections as to the functions of TAA - there should be no difficulty in the Government's accepting the amendment because it clearly puts into proper perspective the agreement reached between the previous Government and TAA prior to the last election. In his second-reading speech the Minister said that he has taken that agreement as the base for changes to the Australian National Airlines Act. I submit to the Committee that if the Minister is serious in saying that there is common ground here, the Minister should have no difficulty in accepting the amendment which I have moved.

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