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Thursday, 31 August 1972
Page: 592

Senator LAWRIE (QUEENSLAND) - My question is addressed to the Minister for Civil Aviation. I refer to the Minister's statement on airline policy made last Tuesday in which, among other things, he said that Trans-Australia Airlines will be given immediate rights to operate air services in competition with Ansett Airlines of Australia between Cairns, Weipa and Thursday Island. I ask the Minister: When TAA starts to operate on this run will fares and freight rates be reviewed?

Senator COTTON (NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for Civil Aviation) - This always takes place when a new operation begins. The honourable senator will recall also my reference to the need to cover the situation of intermediate ports operated by Bush Pilots Airways Ltd, an airline for which I have great admiration. In response to requests in the area, particularly that covered by Comalco from Weipa, it is felt that the service should be expanded and given the benefit of competition. It is hoped that that will result in a better service. We hope, but cannot guarantee, that this will result in lower fares.

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