Tourism will be the big winner from the formation of the new Airlines for Australia and New Zealand group, which has been formed to create a unified voice for airlines in the pursuit of aviation policy issues within our region.
Comprising representatives of Qantas, Air New Zealand, Virgin and Regional Express Holdings, A4ANZ will seek to contribute to the aviation policy debate in areas including airports, access to infrastructure and broader regulatory reform.
I welcome the formation of this group and hope it will be able to contribute to increased growth in the tourism industry in Australia and New Zealand.
Australia needs to look beyond the mining sector for future jobs growth in the wake of the decline in the investment stage of the mining boom.
Tourism already employs a million Australians and offers potential for significant ongoing growth, particularly in regional areas.
Co-operation among the major airlines in the region on policy issues will assist policy makers and the tourism industry to realise that potential.