• Parliament House in Canberra (Steve Hitchen)
    Parliament House in Canberra (Steve Hitchen)

In a policy document released this week, the Australian Labor Party (ALP) has promised to support the recommendations of the Aviation Safety Regulation Review.

The policy states:

"In the last three years, the Abbott-Turnbull Government has completed a review into the regulation of aviation safety. Labor supported this review, and a Shorten Labor Government will maintain the thrust of the recommendations. Labor believes safety in aviation is the paramount concern, and that regulatory settings in this area should be measured, prudent, and not sudden. Labor supports a regulatory approach in aviation safety that is firm but fair."

The ALP has based its 2016 policy on the Aviation White Paper produced by the previous Labor government, which has since been widely discredited by the general aviation community.

"The White Paper listed four objectives for the industry," the policy states:

  • To give industry the certainty and incentive to plan and invest for the long term
  • To maintain and improve Australia’s excellent safety record
  • To give proper consideration for the interests of travellers and users of airports
  • To better manage the impact of aviation activity on communities and the environment.

"These goals remain the elements underpinning Labor’s policy approach. The White Paper was released in the midst of the Global Financial Crisis but it anticipated better times, which have come to pass."

The ALP has also listed eight measures that it believes will support general aviation specifically:

  • Supporting the continued operation of secondary capital city airports, vital to general aviation
  • Ensuring secondary airports maintain a focus on aviation development
  • Not allowing non-aeronautical uses to compromise future aviation activity
  • Enhancing air traffic safety
  • Providing support for essential airport infrastructure and air services in remote areas
  • Ensuring the Civil Aviation Safety Authority places a high priority on supporting safety and increased professionalism in the sector
  • Backing Australia’s aircraft and component manufacturing industry through mutual recognition agreements
  • Continuing Federal Government support for exporting companies through the Export Market Development Grants scheme.

At the time of writing, no Coalition aviation policy has been released and none is likely to before the Federal Election tomorrow.

2016 ALP Aviation Policy

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