Oct 29, 2010

Australia’s aviation industry grows during tough times

Australia’s aviation industry grows during tough times

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

Minister for Infrastructure & Transport

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

October 29 2010

The Australian aviation industry defied the worst global economic downturn in more than three generations and posted solid growth while airlines elsewhere racked up huge losses, shed thousands of workers and even went into bankruptcy.

Last financial year the nation’s airports and airlines were busier than ever, with an unprecedented number of people flying domestically (25.6 million; up 3 per cent) as well as into and out of Australia (51.76 million; up 9.1 per cent).

Not only does this result underscore the resilience of the Australian industry, it also provides further proof that our Economic Stimulus Plan worked. By keeping people in their jobs, the Plan gave many Australians the means and confidence to take their annual family holiday or book a weekend getaway.

Globally the story has been very different. Over the past eighteen months passenger numbers fell by as much as 10 per cent and airlines collectively lost over $9 billion, with more than 50 ceasing to operate altogether.

In 2009-10 the fastest growing domestic routes were:

  1. Adelaide to the Gold Coast – up 19.4 per cent;
  2. Cairns to Townsville – up 14.2 per cent;
  3. Port Macquarie to Sydney – up 12.6 per cent;
  4. Melbourne to Sydney – up 12.2 per cent;
  5. Adelaide to Sydney – up 10.9 per cent.

Internationally, the biggest growth occurred on routes between:

  1. Abu Dhabi to Melbourne – up 350 per cent;
  2. Denpasar to Perth – up 96 per cent;
  3. Auckland to the Gold Coast – up 87 per cent;
  4. Kuala Lumpur to the Gold Coast – up 58 per cent;
  5. Los Angeles to Sydney – up 54 per cent.

To sustain this growth and make sure Australia continues to reap the social and economic benefits of air travel this Government has published the nation’s first ever Aviation White Paper to give industry the certainty to make the tough but necessary long term investment decisions.

A full copy of the latest aviation statistics can be downloaded from: www.bitre.gov.au.