Apr 6, 2008

New Watch on Airport Parking Fees


New Watch on Airport Parking Fees

Media Statement

Anthony Albanese MP,

Minister for Infrastructure, Transport

Regional Development, and Local Government

Leader of the House

April 06 2008

The Rudd Labor Government will direct the consumer watchdog – the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) – to monitor car parking costs and revenue at the nation’s five major airports.

Last year, the previous government allowed the ACCC monitoring program to lapse at the very time total car parking revenue reached an unprecedented $206 million – not a good time for government to take its eyes off the ball.

The Rudd Labor Government believes proper monitoring of car parking costs and revenue at major airports is in the best interest of nation’s travelling public.

Accordingly we will restart the monitoring of both long and short term parking at Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney airports.

I recognise there are genuine public concerns about airports using their monopoly position to exert significant market power and charge higher prices for the various periods of stay – particularly short term stays to drop off and pick up passengers.

We need to ensure that this monopoly position doesn’t lead to the exploitation of the travelling public and their families.

By international standards the parking charges at some Australian airports are high.

Car parking rates

Car parking charges are also a significant, and in some cases, growing element to the revenue of the nation’s airports, making up as much as 18 per cent of an airport’s total revenue.

In 2006/07, revenue from parking ranged from $9.8 million at Adelaide Airport to $69.6 million at Sydney Airport.

Growth in Revenue

What’s more, revenue from car parking has been growing at a much quicker rate than the number of people actually moving through the terminals.

Since 2002, passenger numbers at the five airports have increased by about 41 per cent; while over the same period of time parking revenues grew by a much greater 77 per cent. The graph below shows the growth numbers for each of the five major airports.

Parking revenues

The inclusion of car parking in the ACCC’s monitoring regime will provide greater transparency and accountability for the pricing of these facilities.

Contact: Jeff Singleton 0410 476 890