House debates

Thursday, 6 March 2014


Qantas Sale Amendment Bill 2014; Second Reading

11:10 am

Photo of Bill ShortenBill Shorten (Maribyrnong, Australian Labor Party, Leader of the Opposition) Share this | Hansard source

Let us have a look at how this brain snap will work that the government has come up with. First of all, the new business will need an air-operating certificate. How long will that take? It will take about a year. The two businesses, the new international and new domestic businesses, will need to divide up. They will need to work out who owns what planes—not an impossible question to work out but not without a lot of legal and contractual work. They will need to work out how they demerge the two businesses. Whilst I acknowledge that some of the cost centres in Qantas could be clearly demarcated to go international business and some of the cost centres can be clearly demarcated to go into the domestic business, I believe that upwards of 80 per cent of the cost structure of Qantas is shared. What Qantas does not understand is how on earth is the government, simply through a legislative instrument, going to deal with the business case of demerging the two airlines? Qantas does not have two years of the government's time to try to work out its future. It does not have hundreds of millions of dollars to implement the latest brain fade from the Abbott government, as it cannot fight for Australian jobs.

Then you have got to look at the buyers. Who is actually going to buy this airline? The cashed-up buyers in global aviation are China South—


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