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Aviation Industry

Aviation is a resilient industry and in 2010, despite a period of economic uncertainty, BAC and its airline partners have emerged stronger and more sustainable than ever before.

BAC has continued to work with international and domestic airlines building a network of connections to Australia and the world.

In July 2009, Strategic Aviation joined the Brisbane fleet to offer charter flights, utilising their first aircraft, an Airbus A330-200.

With great celebration, Air New Zealand marked its 50th anniversary in Australia, having made its first trip to Brisbane on 2 July 1959. Air New Zealand is now Brisbane Airport's third largest airline partner, with over a half a million passengers flying through Brisbane each year.

In September 2009 QantasLink commenced services between Brisbane and Moranbah in Queensland's Bowen Basin coal fields, expanding the regional network and helping secure the future of growth industries such as mining that are vital to the diversification and sustainability of the Queensland economy.

V Australia's inaugural service to Phuket took off in November, linking with Virgin Blue's extensive network. As part of this network, Pacific Blue further increased their Brisbane services, adding Hamilton and Dunedin to recently introduced flights between Brisbane and Denpasar, Apia, Port Moresby and Honiara. These additional services have provided 28 percent more seats than the previous year and have been a key driver for 2009-2010 international passenger growth at Brisbane Airport. In 2009/2010, Pacific Blue was the second largest international airline at Brisbane Airport (as measured by passengers carried), and the second largest international airline (as measured by available seat capacity).

Later in the year, BAC welcomed the Federal Government release of the Aviation Policy White Paper helping to foster investment certainty for airports and ensuring the delivery of billions of dollar in private sector-funded infrastructure.

In addition to the noise abatement measures already voluntarily undertaken at Brisbane Airport, to minimise the impact of aircraft operations, in March 2010 the Federal Government announced that there would be a complete ban on older marginally compliant jet aircraft. BAC was instrumental in campaigning for a modern, quiet and fuel efficient fleet.

Pointing to a stronger year ahead in domestic services, Tiger Airways introduced flights from Brisbane to Melbourne, Adelaide and Rockhampton bringing choice, diversity and competition to the market.

In a further sign of an emerging recovery in international aviation, Philippine Airlines recommenced services on the Manila-Melbourne-Brisbane route, providing up to 1,200 additional passengers per week. The new service indicates the growing popularity of the region and Brisbane Airport's emerging role as a hub for the Asia Pacific.

In further regional developments, Thai Airways now fly daily non-stop from Brisbane to Bangkok. With the Sydney stopover dropped from the route, passengers now have more time in their destination and less time travelling. Malaysian Airlines made a similar improvement to their schedule and now fly five times a week non stop to Kuala Lumpur.

In a significant boost for Queensland's future business and investment ties with China, one of Asia's largest airlines, China Southern, announced flights from Guangzhou to Brisbane, providing long overdue non-stop access to one of the state's fastest growing markets.

Tourism will be the big winner, with more than 153,000 Chinese visitors to Queensland last year making China one of Queensland's largest inbound tourist markets. This number is forecast to grow at over 10 percent per annum in the coming years. China is also high on the list of destinations for Brisbane residents with more than 23,000 making the trip last year. The new flights, using Airbus A330 aircraft, will provide 1,700 additional seats each week into Brisbane.

Brisbane Airport's huge catchment area and extensive domestic airline network, with over three million people residing within two hours drive of Brisbane Airport, is an important factor when airlines are looking for outbound passengers as well as inbound. Brisbane Airport is unique because it serves 42 domestic destinations, all non-stop, more than any other Australian capital city.

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