1st Kennett Ministry


NEWS RELEASE


From the Office of the Minister for Industry and Employment

September 8, 1993
JAPANESE PILOTS' CAREERS SET FOR TAKE OFF AT AVALON

A new advanced pilot training program for All Nippon Airways took off today at Avalon Airport, signalling another major initiative for Victoria's aviation and aerospace industries.

The Minister for Industry and Employment, Mr Gude, told a welcoming ceremony at Avalon that the program recognised the airport's potential and reflected Government recognition of these key industries in last week's Industry Statement.

"ANA, as Japan's largest airline, has shown its commitment to Avalon by signing a three-year contract with AeroSpace Technologies of Australia (ASTA), which leases the airport from the Commonwealth Government," Mr Gude said.

"It has a further six-year extension available, which I hope will be taken as the State builds on its leading market share of the aviation and aerospace sectors."

ASTA's subsidiary, ASTA Aircraft Services, which already provides maintenance work for ANA's Boeing 747s, will contract line maintenance work for the pilot training aircraft.

ASTA's presence in the industry has increased significantly. Since 1989 ASTA has increased its sales revenue by 65% and tripled its exports, which now make up nearly 80% of its business.

"The Government welcomes ASTA's performance in the context of its goal for sustained growth and increased job opportunities for Victorians," Mr Gude said.

"ASTA is playing its part in the recovery and we are pleased to be able to support it in areas such as infrastructure and research. The Government was also pleased to play a role in negotiations with ANA for the pilot training program.

"I find it extremely gratifying that an airline of ANA's reputation and stature has chosen Avalon to undertake its pilot training program. It is another initiative which is putting Geelong back on the map as a centre of industrial and commercial activity."

Mr Gude said the support of the City of Greater Geelong and the Civil Aviation Authority had been fundamental in attracting ANA and he looked forward to ongoing assistance from these bodies to attract more investment opportunities.

MEDIA ENQURIES: Ian Smith on 018 81 4611