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Old November 15th, 2004, 12:09 PM   #41
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Passenger numbers break records at Perth Airport
Perth Airport was buzzing in October with nearly 600,000 passengers travelling through the airport.

This is the highest number of international and domestic passengers that the airport has ever handled in a calendar month, Perth Airport CEO Graham Muir said.

This beats our last record month which was set in July this year with 562,000 passengers Mr Muir said.

Around 428,000 domestic passengers travelled through the airport in October, an all time record, up 14% on the same month last year and 6% higher than July, the last record month.

Domestic passengers through Perth Airport are now 30-40% higher than they were before the collapse of Ansett due to the fantastic travel deals offered by Qantas, Virgin Blue and Skywest Mr Muir said.

In response to the higher domestic passenger trends, Perth Airport is undertaking an upgrade of Terminal 3, the terminal where Virgin Blue and Skywest operate. There will also be a 22% increase in car parking capacity.

International passenger numbers are also climbing into the records with Perth Airport welcoming around 167,000 travellers in October 2004, a 10% increase on October 2003 figures.

This was a great outcome considering that the Rugby World Cup was held in October 2003 which caused thousands of international rugby fans to travel to Perth, said Mr Muir.

The record passenger numbers in October preceded a 17-18% growth in international seating capacity under the new Northern Winter Schedule, which commenced on 31st October. The new schedule includes two new Airlines servicing Perth, Valuair and Australian Airlines, which will commence operations in December this year.

Perth Airport was awarded the prestigious Australian Major Airport of the Year 2004 title by the Australian Airports Association at its national conference in Alice Springs this week. The second year in a row Perth Airport has received this award.
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Old November 15th, 2004, 09:55 PM   #42
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These data from the Australian Government might be of much interest to aviation buffs in the Australian context. These are the latest data for the year 2003.

TABLE I: INTERNATIONAL PASSENGERS BY UPLIFT/DISCHARGE AND CITY PAIRS

This table shows the total number of passengers carried by all schedules airlines out of any Australian port to any international destination for the year 2003.

Code:
									% Change
Foreign			Australian		Year ended	% of	2003 over
Port			Port			December 2003	Total	2002
Auckland		Sydney			1,137,536	6.9	16.9
Singapore		Sydney			917,367		5.6	-3.2
Singapore		Perth			665,063		4.0	-2.7
Singapore		Melbourne		625,305		3.8	-5.5
Los Angeles		Sydney			612,352		3.7	-8.2
Singapore		Brisbane		552,094		3.4	22.5
Auckland		Melbourne		536,031		3.3	6.6
Auckland		Brisbane		530,866		3.2	19.8
Hong Kong		Sydney			504,054		3.1	-14.3
Christchurch		Sydney			444,022		2.7	13.6
Bangkok			Sydney			443,639		2.7	-3.6
Tokyo			Sydney			421,800		2.6	-4.1
London			Sydney			387,448		2.4	10.8
Seoul			Sydney			335,663		2.0	-0.4
Kuala Lumpur		Sydney			293,310		1.8	-4.9
Los Angeles		Melbourne		257,915		1.6	26.4
Hong Kong		Melbourne		246,619		1.5	-11.1
Kuala Lumpur		Melbourne		244,370		1.5	2.2
Tokyo			Brisbane		238,368		1.4	-3.7
Tokyo			Cairns			234,048		1.4	-7.7
Wellington		Sydney			221,313		1.3	-0.7
Nadi			Sydney			216,885		1.3	4.0
London			Melbourne		198,085		1.2	15.8
Bangkok			Melbourne		191,424		1.2	-7.0
Kuala Lumpur		Perth			184,089		1.1	5.7
San Francisco		Sydney			174,844		1.1	6.1
Christchurch		Melbourne		158,996		1.0	3.1
Dubai			Melbourne		146,885		0.9	1.9
Dubai			Sydney			145,155		0.9	50.9
Christchurch		Brisbane		144,281		0.9	-2.0
Denpasar		Perth			139,071		0.8	-10.7
Nagoya			Cairns			130,550		0.8	2.1
Osaka			Sydney			128,693		0.8	-23.0
Johannesburg		Sydney			126,198		0.8	8.8
Denpasar		Sydney			123,390		0.8	-21.0
Dubai			Perth			118,399		0.7	196.9
Honolulu		Sydney			118,364		0.7	-9.1
Vienna			Sydney			115,570		0.7	3.6
Osaka			Brisbane		108,922		0.7	-20.1
Taipei			Sydney			107,258		0.7	5.0
Singapore		Adelaide		103,581		0.6	3.5
Manila			Sydney			102,223		0.6	4.1
Wellington		Melbourne		101,932		0.6	-4.0
Kuala Lumpur		Brisbane		98,068		0.6	-5.2
Johannesburg		Perth			95,752		0.6	-1.0
Hong Kong		Brisbane		95,731		0.6	-28.2
Osaka			Cairns			95,193		0.6	-2.2
Shanghai		Sydney			94,515		0.6	3.3
Vancouver		Sydney			93,082		0.6	19.9
Wellington		Brisbane		89,045		0.5	-5.8
Denpasar		Melbourne		82,245		0.5	-9.2
Frankfurt		Sydney			81,362		0.5	43.4
Noumea			Sydney			80,731		0.5	-1.3
Los Angeles		Brisbane		79,417		0.5	26.0
Auckland		Perth			77,067		0.5	-0.6
Nadi			Melbourne		74,872		0.5	11.2
Tokyo			Melbourne		73,708		0.4	8.7
Hong Kong		Cairns			71,645		0.4	5.1
Jakarta			Sydney			71,616		0.4	-20.3
Kuala Lumpur		Adelaide		69,397		0.4	5.0
Nadi			Brisbane		69,202		0.4	22.1
Hong Kong		Perth			66,316		0.4	-28.2
Bangkok			Perth			65,767		0.4	-12.4
Auckland		Gold Coast/Coolangatta	64,445		0.4	4.6
Port Moresby		Brisbane		59,229		0.4	-2.2
Bangkok			Brisbane		56,578		0.3	8.2
Seoul			Brisbane		56,050		0.3	11.8
Taipei			Brisbane		55,472		0.3	-9.1
Guangzhou		Sydney			52,797		0.3	-15.6
Tokyo			Perth			51,713		0.3	4.3
Singapore		Cairns			51,110		0.3	25.2
Bandar Seri Begawan	Brisbane		46,876		0.3	-15.0
Vienna			Melbourne		45,885		0.3	8.3
Beijing			Sydney			45,698		0.3	-23.8
Port Moresby		Cairns			45,671		0.3	-8.3
Auckland		Cairns			44,665		0.3	0.6
Hamilton		Brisbane		43,215		0.3	-11.4
Ho Chi Minh City	Melbourne		39,855		0.2	-7.0
Singapore		Darwin			39,099		0.2	56.8
New York		Sydney			38,540		0.2	20.8
Santiago		Sydney			38,080		0.2	107.7
Bandar Seri Begawan	Perth			38,067		0.2	-10.2
Palmerston		Brisbane		37,021		0.2	7.1
Denpasar		Brisbane		35,869		0.2	-28.2
Port Vila		Sydney			35,677		0.2	0.4
Fukuoka			Cairns			35,609		0.2	557.5
Noumea			Brisbane		33,874		0.2	-3.3
Dunedin			Brisbane		31,296		0.2	-5.2
Buenos Aires		Sydney			29,233		0.2	-21.0
Jakarta			Perth			27,521		0.2	-17.4
Christchurch		Gold Coast/Coolangatta	26,985		0.2	454.7
Denpasar		Darwin			25,493		0.2	-41.0
Guam			Cairns			25,193		0.2	14.7
Hamilton		Melbourne		24,646		0.1	-0.4
Manila			Melbourne		23,060		0.1	-8.1
Hamilton		Sydney			22,916		0.1	-0.1
Port Moresby		Sydney			22,231		0.1	0.1
Hong Kong		Adelaide		22,163		0.1	-19.9
Guangzhou		Melbourne		21,691		0.1	-31.9
Port Vila		Brisbane		21,147		0.1	3.7
Dubai			Brisbane		18,896		0.1	100
Suva			Sydney			18,767		0.1	14.8
Honiara			Brisbane		18,071		0.1	14.9
Dunedin			Sydney			17,828		0.1	-6.2
Hamilton		Gold Coast/Coolangatta	17,605		0.1	-8.4
Palmerston		Sydney			17,526		0.1	-6.8
Palmerston		Melbourne		17,068		0.1	0.6
Dunedin			Melbourne		16,924		0.1	10.1
Paris			Perth			16,476		0.1	95.5
Mauritius		Melbourne		16,415		0.1	7.5
Phuket			Perth			16,151		0.1	-31.0
Shanghai		Melbourne		15,303		0.1	304.7
Auckland		Norfolk Island		15,252		0.1	-4.0
Beijing			Melbourne		14,617		0.1	-8.2
Queenstown		Sydney			14,119		0.1	-24.8
Chicago			Sydney			14,113		0.1	-3.8
Osaka			Gold Coast/Coolangatta	13,032		0.1	280.8
Mauritius		Perth			13,009		0.1	20.2
Bandar Seri Begawan	Darwin			12,865		0.1	-5.8
Dunedin			Gold Coast/Coolangatta	12,707		0.1	59.9
Taipei			Cairns			12,354		0.1	289.0
Manila			Brisbane		12,163		0.1	-3.7
Ho Chi Minh City	Sydney			11,936		0.1	-57.7
Denpasar		Adelaide		11,708		0.1	-44.5
Apia			Sydney			11,162		0.1	29.7
Kuching			Perth			9,997		0.1	14.9
Kota Kinabalu		Sydney			9,098		0.1	100
Nagoya			Sydney			9,007		0.1	-75.2
Nauru			Brisbane		8,183		0.0	-17.7
Bahrain			Sydney			7,892		0.0	9.3
Honolulu		Melbourne		6,208		0.0	-73.3
Rome			Melbourne		5,566		0.0	-81.6
Hanoi			Melbourne		4,971		0.0	16.5
Queenstown		Brisbane		4,883		0.0	-4.2
Rome			Brisbane		4,607		0.0	-38.5
Chicago			Melbourne		4,574		0.0	80.1
Tongatapu		Sydney			4,365		0.0	6.3
Nagoya			Gold Coast/Coolangatta	3,665		0.0	17.5
Nauru			Melbourne		2,780		0.0	-5.1
Hanoi			Sydney			2,153		0.0	-45.8
Rome			Perth			2,119		0.0	-64.1
Rome			Sydney			1,704		0.0	-94.3
Phuket			Melbourne		1,140		0.0	100
Phuket			Sydney			777		0.0	100
Kota Kinabalu		Cairns			523		0.0	100
Fukuoka			Gold Coast/Coolangatta	499		0.0	-65.2
New York		Melbourne		444		0.0	-95.4
Papeete			Sydney			380		0.0	-87.9
Bangkok			Darwin			233		0.0	796.2
Paris			Sydney			133		0.0	-99.6
Niue			Sydney			96		0.0	700.0
London			Perth			45		0.0	-99.9
London			Brisbane		9		0.0	-100.0
New York		Brisbane		9		0.0	-97.2
Honolulu		Brisbane		2		0.0	-99.9
ALL CITY PAIRS					16,445,508	100.0	0.4
It will be interesting to see how the figures may change this year, especially given the SARS epidemic effecting aviation travel in the East Asian region.
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Old November 17th, 2004, 01:23 PM   #43
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Old November 17th, 2004, 09:18 PM   #44
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Wednesday November 17, 1:53 PM
Virgin Blue interim profit falls amid uncertain outlook

SYDNEY (AFP) - Discount Australian airline Virgin Blue posted a 1.8 percent fall in first half net profit and said volatile fuel prices were making the outlook uncertain.

Virgin Blue said net profit for the six months to the end of September was 63 million dollars (48.8 million US), compared to 64.2 million dollars in the same period last year.

The company said yields were down 12 percent over the half year due to increased capacity.

"The outlook remains uncertain," the company said in a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange.

"Yield is expected to remain under pressure and below last year's levels. While fuel continues to be volatile and at record prices, Virgin Blue remains exposed to further increases in fuel prices that may not be recoverable through fare increases."

Virgin Blue, which listed in December last year, did not declare an interim dividend.

Shares in the airline fell six cents or 2.96 percent to 1.97 dollars shortly after the announcement after being up two percent before the figures were released. The overall market was up slightly.
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Old November 18th, 2004, 01:47 PM   #45
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Nov 18, 2004

SIA slashes fares to Perth by half to meet budget challenge

Move is seen as counter to Valuair's plans to fly there; price cuts also made for other sectors eyed by no-frills carriers

By Karamjit Kaur
Transport Correspondent


SINGAPORE Airlines (SIA) has more than halved its fares to Perth in an apparent move to undercut budget upstart Valuair, which is slated to begin flights to the Western Australian city next month.

For passengers travelling in pairs, SIA is quoting a fare of $328 each for round-trip tickets on selected flights, which is $22 below Valuair's minimum fare of $350 a ticket. However, for a single passenger, SIA is charging $660.

In a half-page advertisement in The Straits Times yesterday, the full-service airline also unveiled price cuts of up to 22 per cent for flights to Hanoi and Ho Chin Minh in Vietnam, destinations that budget carriers like Tiger Airways and Jetstar Asia - which starts operating next month - are said to be eyeing.

Round-trip tickets to Hanoi are going for $298 per head, if four people travel together, or $398 if two go together.

For Ho Chin Minh, it is $278 each for a group of four and $328 each for a pair.

SIA is also offering discounted fares to Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Guangzhou.

Its deals - all for selected flights and for a limited number of seats - were announced a day after Australian national carrier Qantas said it would offer discounts of up to 40 per cent on tickets to Perth and other destinations in Australia.

Passengers travelling in pairs can buy return tickets to Perth for $348 per head. When contacted, Qantas' spokesman here said the deals have nothing to do with Valuair flying to Perth, but are part of the airline's 84th birthday celebrations.

She said: 'Qantas has launched a massive birthday sale across the region... We are the world's second oldest airline and this is our way of thanking our customers for their loyal support.'

Bookings for the Qantas offer close at midnight today and tickets are valid for travel between Feb 9 and March 31.

SIA's promotion is valid for travel between Dec 24 and Jan 31, but tickets must be issued by Dec 3.

A spokesman for the airline's sales service said that 'as part of our periodic review of flights, we regularly offer promotions where there are opportunities'.

SIA and other carriers had also cut fares when Valuair and Tiger Airways started flying to Bangkok.


COMPETITION BENEFITS CONSUMERS, SAYS VALUAIR: 'SIA and Qantas are offering promotional fares to Perth for a limited period of time and for limited seats, but our fares are available throughout the year. At the end of the day, it is the consumer who benefits. It is interesting to note that Valuair had to enter the market before the big airlines decided to cut their fares.' -- MR SIM KAY WEE, Valuair's chief executive officer, saying the budget carrier is not worried that established airlines like SIA are cutting their prices
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Old November 18th, 2004, 01:58 PM   #46
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Nov 17, 2004
SIA's hopes brighten for Aussie-US flights

Canberra will consider granting the airline unlimited access to trans-Pacific routes

By Karamjit Kaur
Transport Correspondent


AFTER pushing for more than 10 years for the right to fly the lucrative Australia-United States route, there may finally be light at the end of the tunnel for Singapore Airlines (SIA).

In the most positive statement from the Australian government on the issue to date, Deputy Prime Minister and Transport Minister John Anderson was quoted by the Australian Financial Review on Monday as saying that his government will consider granting SIA unlimited access to trans-Pacific routes in the next 12 to 18 months.

But both the Australian government and SIA will first have to overcome the strong objections of Australian flag carrier Qantas.

The agreement sought by SIA will allow it to compete with Qantas on routes like the money-making Sydney-Los Angeles sector.

Mr Anderson's statement is an important development for SIA, which is a major player in both the Australian and US west coast markets but is unable to offer services connecting the two.

The airline operates 80 flights a week to Australia, making it the country's largest overseas-based carrier, SIA spokesman Stephen Forshaw told The Straits Times.

An agreement with Australia would allow SIA to make more use of the 'open skies' deal Singapore already has with the US, which imposes no restrictions on air capacity between the two countries.

Mr Forshaw said: 'Serving two markets where the SIA brand is very strong and where our customer base is very large would provide an opportunity for SIA's future growth.'

Qantas has for a long time been a vocal opponent of any plans to open up the market to SIA.

The direct trans-Pacific route - a duopoly controlled by Qantas and United Airlines - is Qantas' most lucrative, making up an estimated 10-15 per cent of its profits.

SIA claims it does not intend to 'squabble' with Qantas and United Airlines over market share.

'Our assessment is that there is unmet demand on the Australia-US route. There isn't enough capacity on the route to feed the demand, particularly from the US, with people wanting to visit Australia,' Mr Forshaw said.

'In addition, business travellers are always complaining that there aren't enough seats at key periods of the year.'

Less than a month ago, a spokesman for Mr Anderson said that the government was not 'prepared to revisit the issue of trans-Pacific rights' until there was 'greater stability in the global aviation environment'.

But this week, Mr Anderson told the Australian Financial Review: 'I believe that the global outlook has stabilised and improved and we gave the Singaporeans a commitment that when things had settled down, we would talk to them again.'

Qantas, however, was not quite so welcoming.

In the same article, its chief financial officer Peter Gregg was reported as saying through a spokesman: 'If Mr Anderson has said that he believes the global aviation industry has stabilised, we disagree with that view.'

For one thing, aviation fuel prices are still at historic highs, he said.

A spokesman for the Transport Ministry said the Singapore Government hopes the long-outstanding open skies agreement with Australia can be concluded soon.

'It will benefit our overall economies and our people and further catalyse the growth of trade, tourism, investment and people-to-people links between our two countries,' she said.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Why now?

FOR some industry analysts, Deputy Prime Minister and Transport Minister John Anderson's statement represents a major shift in the Australian government's thinking. The change, they suspect, has to do with Australia wanting to secure a licence and air rights for Jetstar Asia, a budget airline 49 per cent owned by Qantas.

The airline, scheduled to begin operating here in December, has yet to be granted licence by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore.

Mr Peter Harbison of the Sydney-based Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation said: 'It seems a strange coincidence that the Australian government is now saying it will consider giving Singapore Airlines the right to fly the trans-Pacific routes just when Jetstar Asia is due to start operating.'

For many years, Singapore had no leverage over Qantas, which already enjoys unlimited rights to operate out of Changi.

Mr Kevin O'Connor, an aviation analyst at CLSA research house, said: 'Is it possible that Jetstar Asia was the quid pro quo in this case? Yes, I think it could have been.'
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Old November 19th, 2004, 12:48 AM   #47
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Friday November 19, 5:04 AM
AUSTRALIA PRESS: Qantas, Air France Work On Closer Ties

SYDNEY (Dow Jones)--Qantas Airways Ltd. (QAN.AU) is considering extending its cooperative relationship with Air France SA (3112.FR) into China, less than a month after the airlines began code-share flights between Singapore and Paris, the Australian reports Friday.

Qantas Chief Executive Officer Geoff Dixon made an overnight visit to Paris last week to discuss a co-pricing arrangement with Air France for some Asian destinations, the report says.

A deal with Air France, which flies daily to Shanghai, Guangzhou, Beijing and Canton, could allow Qantas to accelerate its exposure to the rapidly growing Chinese market.
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Old November 19th, 2004, 12:30 PM   #48
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Business Times - 19 Nov 2004

Virgin Blue seeks to expand overseas

(HONG KONG) Virgin Blue Holdings Ltd, Australia's second-biggest airline, is seeking to expand overseas as growth slows in its domestic market, where it plans to add just two aircraft this year, chief executive Brett Godfrey said.

'Growth is not just going to be harder to come by, but there's less opportunities to stimulate markets in the Australia-New Zealand region and so we will be looking at what else we can do,' Mr Godfrey said in a televised interview.

Virgin Blue, whose fleet expanded to 45 planes from two in its first 4 1/4 years, on Wednesday said first-half net income declined 1.8 per cent, partly because of increased competition from Qantas Airways Ltd. Mr Godfrey this year started flights to New Zealand and Fiji, and is in talks with Air Macau and Hong Kong-based Shun Tak Holdings Ltd to start a joint venture airline.

An announcement on the new airline is expected within weeks after China allowed Air Macau to increase its number of flights to the mainland by 90 per cent, the South China Morning Post reported yesterday, citing unidentified Macau officials. Qantas is setting up a Singapore-based discount carrier, to start flying next month, with a S$50 million investment.

Qantas will own 49.9 per cent of Jetstar Asia. Singapore investment company Temasek Holdings owns 19 per cent, and Singapore businessmen Tony Chew has 21.1 per cent and Wong Fong Fui 10 per cent.

Virgin Blue's domestic fleet flies 47 routes to 21 destinations. Larger rival Qantas has said it will seek to stop Virgin Blue taking more than the 35 per cent share of Australia's domestic air travel market it already has.

Mr Godfrey said there are opportunities to expand Virgin Blue's domestic business. 'I still believe we can grow greater than CPI or GDP,' Mr Godfrey said. 'There are some markets that can be stimulated.'

Virgin Blue plans to encourage more Australians to travel by air by lowering fares on some routes. Fares for business travellers and those travelling in peak times will rise to help the airline cover rising fuel costs, Mr Godfrey said. - Bloomberg

Copyright 2004 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. All rights reserved.
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Old November 21st, 2004, 12:58 PM   #49
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Valuair serves up Aussie-style barbecue to promote Perth flights
SINGAPORE : Over a thousand participants had an alfresco meal at the Padang this weekend for a barbecue organised by no-frills airline, Valuair.

Serving up Aussie fare -- and we're not just talking about air-ticket giveaways and contests, but also 2,000 sausages, 1,500 steak fillets and plenty of booze and wine from Down Under.

It is all part of a ValuAir's blitz to get Singaporeans acquainted with the great Australian outdoors, as the airline starts flying to Perth next month.

For S$15, two persons could have a barbecue platter and a drink.

"The meat is lovely -- it's really well cooked; the beer is tasty, and it feels like an Australian barbecue here in Singapore. It's fantastic."

Even Australians are being targeted by Valuair.

Valuair CEO Sim Kay Wee said, "Australians who are normally taking a day off to fly off to Sydney and all that are now coming to Singapore. And we're now selling Singapore, as well Singapore plus Bangkok, Singapore plus Hong Kong for the Aussies."

And if the Singapore-Perth route takes off, travelling to other Australian cities could be cheaper too.

Said Australian High Commissioner Gary Quinlan, "There are other cities obviously which would want to benefit out of that opportunity. And once they see the numbers of tourists moving in both directions, I think the market will take care of that."
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Old November 21st, 2004, 10:50 PM   #50
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Sunday November 21, 12:35 PM
Expanding Emirates denies unfair advantage
ABC

The Dubai-based airline, Emirates Air, has rejected suggestions it holds an unfair advantage over other airlines, including Qantas.

Emirates Air is planning to double its flights by next October but says it never aims to carry traffic at the expense of any other airlines.

Emirates president Maurice Flanagan has told Channel Nine that the airline is not unfairly advantaged in Australia because of its ownership by the Government of Dubai.

"We were given $10 million to start the airline in '85 and told don't come back for any more," he said.

"Well, some more was put in, the shell of our training college was put in but all the expensive gear inside that simulates and so forth we put in, very little else."

Mr Flanagan also says the airline has been just as affected as any other airline by the surging price of oil.

Jet fuel prices have climbed above US$60 a barrel.

Mr Flanagan says being based in the oil-rich Middle East is no advantage.

"Well why should we?" he said.

"I mean there's very little oil produced in Dubai and it's got no refinery anyway so where do we get it from?

"We get our oil, we buy our oil from the oil companies like everybody else does."
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Old November 21st, 2004, 10:51 PM   #51
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Australia airline over-capacity to stay-Patrick

SYDNEY, Nov 21 (Reuters) - Airline capacity in Australia exceeds demand at current prices and there is no quick fix for the industry, the head of Patrick Corp. Ltd., a major share holder in budget airline Virgin Blue , said on Sunday.

"Clearly there is far stronger competition in there," Patrick Corp's , chief executive Chris Corrigan said on ABC television's Inside Business programme.

"We've got to levels where capacity probably exceeds the demand at current price levels. That's led to a softening in yields," he said.

British billionaire Richard Branson's Virgin Blue airline, 46 percent owned by Corrigan's Patrick Corp, last Wednesday announced a 2 percent fall in net profits to A$63 million ($49 million) for the six months to September 30 because of higher fuel costs and tough competition.

The new entrant to the Australian market has captured a third of the domestic market from its main competitor, Qantas Airways Ltd. . Qantas has fought back by launching its own no-frills carrier, Jetstar.

Patrick Corp., Australia's largest operator of container terminals, on Thursday announced a 25 percent rise in its own results for the year to September 30, before one-offs, to A$190.3 million.

Corrigan said Virgin was studying "18 different things", including the probable introduction of a new route from Sydney to Los Angeles.

"We'll wait to see that the outcome of that research is," he said, declining further details. ($1=A$1.28)
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Old November 22nd, 2004, 12:31 AM   #52
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22 November 2004

Perth Airport taxis on to profit runway

CATHY BOLT


Westralia Airports Corporation, operator of Perth Airport, has signalled it expects strong profit growth into the future as continued robust growth in aviation activity coincides with further development of its vast land estate around the airport.

WAC chief executive Graham Muir said the company had now developed more than 120 hectares of the 700ha it had available for non-aviation commercial use via a mix of capital leases, standard site leases and its own property developments.

The capital leases - which match WAC's 50-year lease plus 49-year option on the airport precinct - include the $80 million, 65,000sqm Woolworths Regional Distribution Centre near the international terminal, which became operational last week.

Mr Muir also disclosed its property development division, which has been rebranded Kwest, expected to announce another major capital lease within a month, one likely to draw some attention because of its size and profile.

"If we can market (the area) properly and we are competitive, over time you would think we would develop most of it," he said.

WAC recently reported a $2.34 million profit for 2003-04, its first since it bought the airport in 1997 as part of the federal airport privatisation program.

The maiden profit was a welcome milestone for the company, which is 75 per cent owned by investment funds controlled by Mike Fitzpatrick's Hastings Funds Management.

The past seven years have included criticism its $639 million bid for the airport was too high, along with a series of crises which stunted airline traffic, including the collapse of Ansett, the September 11 terrorist attacks, the Bali bombing and the SARS outbreak in Asia.

But Mr Muir said it was now "a good time to be involved in airports" with passenger numbers through Perth in October at a record 600,000, more than 10 per cent higher than a year ago.

Extra services and higher capacity aircraft had recently been added to schedules or were about to start, including a daily service to Singapore from December 1 by budget airline Valuair and a service to Bali by Qantas' new budget carrier, Australian Airlines, from December 2. Talks were also underway with Chinese and Indian airlines.

Mr Muir said WAC's enterprise value was now about $1 billion and he expected the improvement in its financial performance would be sustained.

"We anticipate we will achieve ongoing strong profit growth, given the airport costs are largely fixed," he said. "Perth airport has substantial capacity to grow with only incremental capital investment required to meet that demand. The runway system at the moment is operating at around 85,000 movements per annum, and we estimate the capacity to be in excess of 200,000."

Mr Muir said it would seriously look at an investment in a $20 million to $30 million multi-storey carpark at the domestic terminals in a year or two, although it was likely the fees would have to rise a little to ensure it delivered an adequate return.

WAC is in the midst of a higher than normal $50 million capital expenditure program this financial year which includes a $25 million expansion of check-in and baggage handling facilities at the international terminal.

It also includes a soon to start upgrade on its secondary runway, another 22 per cent increase in parking capacity at the domestic terminal, which should be finished in the next couple of months, and an impending refurbishment of the domestic terminal which houses Virgin Blue and Skywest.
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Old November 22nd, 2004, 11:07 AM   #53
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Perth Airport taxis on to profit runway
Westralia Airports Corporation, operator of Perth Airport, has signalled it expects strong profit growth into the future as continued robust growth in aviation activity coincides with further development of its vast land estate around the airport.

WAC chief executive Graham Muir said the company had now developed more than 120 hectares of the 700ha it had available for non-aviation commercial use via a mix of capital leases, standard site leases and its own property developments.

The capital leases - which match WAC's 50-year lease plus 49-year option on the airport precinct - include the $80 million, 65,000sqm Woolworths Regional Distribution Centre near the international terminal, which became operational last week.

Mr Muir also disclosed its property development division, which has been rebranded Kwest, expected to announce another major capital lease within a month, one likely to draw some attention because of its size and profile.

"If we can market (the area) properly and we are competitive, over time you would think we would develop most of it," he said.

WAC recently reported a $2.34 million profit for 2003-04, its first since it bought the airport in 1997 as part of the federal airport privatisation program.

The maiden profit was a welcome milestone for the company, which is 75 per cent owned by investment funds controlled by Mike Fitzpatrick's Hastings Funds Management.

The past seven years have included criticism its $639 million bid for the airport was too high, along with a series of crises which stunted airline traffic, including the collapse of Ansett, the September 11 terrorist attacks, the Bali bombing and the SARS outbreak in Asia.

But Mr Muir said it was now "a good time to be involved in airports" with passenger numbers through Perth in October at a record 600,000, more than 10 per cent higher than a year ago.

Extra services and higher capacity aircraft had recently been added to schedules or were about to start, including a daily service to Singapore from December 1 by budget airline Valuair and a service to Bali by Qantas' new budget carrier, Australian Airlines, from December 2. Talks were also underway with Chinese and Indian airlines.

Mr Muir said WAC's enterprise value was now about $1 billion and he expected the improvement in its financial performance would be sustained.

"We anticipate we will achieve ongoing strong profit growth, given the airport costs are largely fixed," he said. "Perth airport has substantial capacity to grow with only incremental capital investment required to meet that demand. The runway system at the moment is operating at around 85,000 movements per annum, and we estimate the capacity to be in excess of 200,000."

Mr Muir said it would seriously look at an investment in a $20 million to $30 million multi-storey carpark at the domestic terminals in a year or two, although it was likely the fees would have to rise a little to ensure it delivered an adequate return.

WAC is in the midst of a higher than normal $50 million capital expenditure program this financial year which includes a $25 million expansion of check-in and baggage handling facilities at the international terminal.

It also includes a soon to start upgrade on its secondary runway, another 22 per cent increase in parking capacity at the domestic terminal, which should be finished in the next couple of months, and an impending refurbishment of the domestic terminal which houses Virgin Blue and Skywest.
http://www.thewest.com.au/20041122/b...sto129864.html
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Old November 22nd, 2004, 11:08 AM   #54
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shit read thread first lol sorry guys
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Old November 22nd, 2004, 01:59 PM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perthwa
shit read thread first lol sorry guys
Hahaah...for once I found an article earlier then you? Not always there is one on Perth, but there you go.
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Old November 23rd, 2004, 03:18 PM   #56
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Virgin Blue Wants Australian Govt to Curb Airport Charges

SYDNEY, Nov 23 Asia Pulse - Low cost carrier Virgin Blue (ASX:VBA) today asked the federal government to review the system put in place three years ago to regulate airport charges in Australia.

Virgin Blue chief executive officer Brett Godfrey said the company had written to the government asking it to intervene and review the processes which put the airports outside government regulation, subject to them acting reasonably.

Mr Godfrey said it was now costing the company US$150 million (US$117 million) more to use Australian airports than it was in 2001 and 15.1 per cent of the airline's costs currently attributed to airports, compared with five per cent three years ago.

"We sent a letter to (Federal Transport Minister) John Anderson this morning, requesting him to review airport pricing," Mr Godfrey told reporters in Sydney.

"We don't want them to absolve themselves from any review, all we want to know is 'what is the definition of a reasonable price increase?'.

"If reasonable is 80 to 110 per cent, I will fall off my perch."

Mr Godfrey said Virgin Blue had "happily concluded" commercial deals with several key airports, including Melbourne and Brisbane.

"But where we can't negotiate fair agreements ... we are saying if they are not prepared to negotiate and give us a fair long term deal then we have no other course of action except to pursue what we can through legal mechanisms and through the government," Mr Godfrey said.

"The government has as much power as the courts to do something about this."

Mr Godfrey said Virgin Blue was due to meet with the federal government "in the next couple of weeks".

"We are catching up with them shortly and I just wanted to pre-empt on what I thought should be on the agenda, and that is the top of the list."

Virgin Blue is currently applying in court to have airports brought back within the fold of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission reviewing processes.

ASIA PULSE
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Old November 30th, 2004, 03:15 PM   #57
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Virgin Blue Posts 29% Jump in Oct Passenger Numbers

BRISBANE, Nov 30 Asia Pulse - Virgin Blue Holdings Ltd (ASX:VBA) today reported passenger numbers were up 29 per cent in October compared to the same month last year.

The discount carrier's preliminary operating statistics for October found Virgin Blue carried 1,166,757 passengers in October compared to 904,532 last year.

It also found traffic, measured by Revenue Passenger Kilometres (RPKs), increased by 32.5 per cent in the same period.

Capacity, measured by Available Seat Kilometres (ASKs) also increased by 38.3 per cent.

Revenue load factor decreased by 3.6 points to 80.1 per cent compared to the previous year.

The carrier's on time performance in October stood at 82 per cent of flights leaving within 15 minutes of scheduled departure time.

In a statement the company said for the seven months to October 2004 passenger numbers increased by 37.1 per cent from the previous year.

RPKs jumped 42.2 per cent, while ASKs increased by 54.5 per cent over the same period.

Revenue load factor decreased by 6.7 points to 77.3 per cent compared to the previous year.

On time performance stood at 87 per cent.
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Old December 3rd, 2004, 04:27 AM   #58
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Australian plans to fly Perth-Bali
December 03, 2004
AUSTRALIAN Airlines is looking to take advantage of an upsurge in tourism to Bali to support direct flights from Perth to the holiday island two years after the terror attacks that devastated the tourist trade.

Counting on a continuing love affair between West Australians and Bali, chief executive Andrea Staines said the Qantas subsidiary was confident the market could sustain twice-weekly flights.

"The market has definitely returned to travelling internationally in general and definitely to Bali," Ms Staines said.

"Australians have got over the jitters ... we have a resilient culture and people are determined to live their lives the way they want."

Using its all-economy class Boeing 767-300s, Australian Airlines will offer a total of 542 seats each week from Perth to Bali - almost doubling the number of seats offered by the Qantas group on the route.

"It's competitive but Bali is a strong market and we're looking forward to participating," Ms Staines said.

"We're not looking to start a price war. We're entering the market with the current market pricing, which today is very competitive and offers great package prices for whatever budget."

The Bali route is the first service to be offered from Perth and will see Australian expand its operations between Australia and Bali to seven flights each week.

The new route would also ensure the airline had a national presence with travel agencies.

Ms Staines said the Thursday and Saturday flights were conveniently timed with afternoon departures from, and arrivals into, Perth.

"You will land in Bali able to access your hotel room and when you come home will have a half-day at your hotel before you head to the airport," she said.

Qantas will continue flying one flight a week from Perth until February 1 to cope with summer demand.

The new Perth-based service brings Australian Airlines' total operations to more than 100 flights per week to 14 destinations in six countries.

Ms Staines said that although Australian was all-economy, it offered full service to passengers.

"We are not no-frills. We offer all the frills passengers expect from a full-service airline, including complimentary meals and snacks, Australian wines, spirits and beer as well as in-flight duty-free shopping.

"Being a leisure airline, we want you to feel like you are on holidays from the moment you step on board, so we offer the latest in-flight movies, an in-flight magazine and audio programs."

The decision to enter the Perth market against Garuda Indonesia and Air Paradise was well researched by Qantas.

"We're now flying Sydney-Bali and Melbourne-Bali - we started that 18 months ago and we've seen a resurgence of Australians travelling to Bali. I'm sure that in Perth we'll see the same," Ms Staines said.

"The Qantas group is working on this in a co-ordinated manner."
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Old December 6th, 2004, 10:25 PM   #59
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Flight into rebel territory could land pilots in jail
Mark Forbes in Port Moresby
7 December 2004
The Sydney Morning Herald

Two Australian pilots face possible imprisonment, and their Queensland employer substantial fines, after being convicted of making an illegal and dangerous flight into territory controlled by the remnants of the Bougainville Revolutionary Army.

Tasman Airlines' $3million executive jet also remains impounded by Papua New Guinean authorities following the mysterious trip into the "no-go zone" around the once-rich Panguna mine at the invitation of the rebel leader Francis Ona.

Two passengers on the late-September flight, James Nessbit, a British businessman, and Jeff Richards, a Queenslander, are believed to still be on Bougainville.

The minister for Bougainville, Sir Peter Barter, said the flight was a potential threat to national security as it could undermine a fragile peace on the island.

About 18 Australian police are patrolling Bougainville under the Enhanced Co-operation Program, but are unable to venture into the no-go zone, which is guarded by heavily armed militants.

At a court hearing yesterday pilot Peter McGee and co-pilot Andrew Reid - who is also the airline's owner - were found guilty of undertaking a dangerous activity involving an aircraft and operating an aircraft in a careless manner.

The two men face up to two years in jail and fines of more than $20,000 each.

Tasman Airlines faces a penalty of up to $100,000 and the loss of its Cessna Citation jet.

Magistrate Ivo Cappo adjourned the hearing to consider sentencing applications on Friday.

He attacked the defendants for saying they had permission to fly into the region from the self-proclaimed royal government of Mekamui, where Mr Ona has proclaimed himself king.

"Bougainville is part of PNG and there is only one legitimate government here," Mr Cappo said. "This is not a legitimate authority and this amounts to an unapproved landing."

Mr Cappo said the plane deviated from its flight plan from Cairns to Buka Island to land at the decommissioned Aropa airport, on the edge of the no-go zone. In an affidavit, Reid said he wanted to inspect sites for three possible medical centres to be constructed by a US-based charity.

Prosecutors alleged that Reid, when interviewed by an Australian police officer on Bougainville, made dishonest and misleading statements about landing at Aropa and his reasons for doing so.
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Old December 11th, 2004, 11:32 AM   #60
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Skywest eyes Asian link
The future of airline services in regional WA now lies in the hands of a Singaporean company that has its eye on Asian destinations but needs to build some bridges in WA after one of the most bruising takeover fights in recent memory.

After eight months of bitter wrangling and recriminations, the Singapore-based CaptiveVision Capital this week obtained control of Skywest and its WA-raised chief executive Jeff Chatfield has even reached an agreement with the Skywest incumbent board for an orderly handover of power.

Word from both the incumbent Skywest camp and CaptiveVision Capital is that they are trying to ensure a smooth transition.

"We're not pursuing a scorched earth policy, we have worked too hard to build this airline up again," said one Skywest supporter instrumental in rescuing the regional operation from the wreckage of Ansett three years ago.

Yet there is concern in regional WA in light of Skywest changing hands again and falling under control of a Singapore-based company with eyes on expanding the regional operation into overseas destinations, such as Singapore and China.

The importance of airline services to regional WA was highlighted when Skywest was enmeshed in the collapse of Ansett in September 2001 and flights were suspended. One observer described Skywest's fall into administration as a "near-death experience for regional WA".

Esperance Shire president Ian Mickel said the regional airline was not a luxury. "It is really our linkage with the social and commercial heart of WA," he said.

With a new board coming into Skywest and the group under new control, new relationships would have to be built. "There is some anxiety but we look forward to having the same strong relationship in the past," he said.

In the heat of the takeover fight in June, a company headed by West Perth accountant Geoff Hick built a blocking stake in the airline.

Mr Hick said at the time he was representing a syndicate of business people from regional centres and with interests in regional development who wanted to preserve Skywest but he has refused to identify the mystery regional backers.

But less than a fortnight after Skywest's November 23 listing on the stock exchange to a lukewarm reception from the market and then a wave of selling through broker Patersons Securities, the Hick-led syndicate sold into the CVC takeover bid.

Mr Hick said members of his syndicate wanted to support the WA airline through to its float and they had hoped the airline's brokers would be able to attract institutional and stockbroker support after it hit the market. Skywest's disappointing performance had ensured CVC's success.

"We hope they will continue to act in the interests of regional WA," Mr Hick said. "We have our doubts."

The words in CVC's takeover documents should soothe patrons of Skywest, phrases such as continue the business of Skywest, preserve the operational management, continue with the air operations of the airline and support and enhance the aviation industry of WA.

But some of CVC's actions during the bid hardly covered it in glory, with it copping a pasting in the Takeovers Panel after Skywest cried foul about information sent to it by Skywest's chief information officer Craig Lovelady, a former director of CVC and a mate of Mr Chatfield's going back to their days at Hale School.

The panel found the suitor had breached takeover rules, misled the airline's shareholders and was "clearly and knowingly" in possession of sensitive financial information from Mr Lovelady. It described discussions between Mr Lovelady and CVC as "extremely unusual and aspects of it were inappropriate".

The panel said it would consider referring aspects of the saga to the Australian Securities & Investments Commission, which was also to be sent information about the conduct of CVC's adviser Stefan Saw over apparent breaches of the Corporations Act relating to phone calls to shareholders during takeovers.

It is believed ASIC is now investigating the leaked information affair, a probe that should stand or fall regardless of who is calling the shots at Skywest.

CVC has obtained, for less than $15 million, control of an airline group that has just one of six high capacity air operators certificates - accreditation that can costs millions of dollars and several years to build and which can be relatively easily upgraded to cover the larger aircraft used on overseas routes.

The future of Skywest now looks to be tied to the backers of CVC, with the Singapore-listed company aircraft sales and leaseback group A-Sonic Aerospace looking at establishing business collaboration arrangements with Skywest in maintenance, engineering and supply of aircraft systems.

CVC said in a supplementary bidder's statement released in September that the suitor would work closely with A-Sonic and another CVC backer China Xpress to "determine how best these parties may be able to assist and develop Skywest and its business".

"Such assistance could include further developing Skywest's charter and freight operations and providing regional routes throughout Asia and Australia," CVC said.

Mr Chatfield was this week reluctant to discuss future developments at Skywest pending the official handing over of power, but said he wanted to assure the travelling public that there were no "changes to any services or the scope of the business of the airline at this stage".

"The whole foreign bidder bit has been overplayed," Mr Chatfield said.

Mr Chatfield said yesterday he could not discuss the board composition before a public statement was made by the Skywest board, except to say the incumbents were in caretaker mode.

Skywest managing director Scott Henderson, who played a key role in mounting a bruising takeover defence, would not discuss his own future. "If there is a change, I will advise the market," he said.

"No one wants to do anything damaging at this point in time, no one wants to see it damaged."
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