Feds pledge ser­vice sup­port

Whitsunday Times - - LOCAL NEWS -

FED­ERAL Mem­ber for Daw­son Ge­orge Chris­tensen is go­ing all out to se­cure the bor­der agency ser­vices the Whit­sun­days would need to op­er­ate New Zealand flights.

Last week he wel­comed the As­sis­tant Min­is­ter for Im­mi­gra­tion, Senator James McGrath, to Mackay to “shore up” sup­port for the in­ter­na­tional flights, say­ing he was a “fel­low Queens­lan­der who un­der­stands the value of tourism”.

Senator McGrath said Mr Chris­tensen had been “ad­vo­cat­ing strongly” for New Zealand flights to and from both des­ti­na­tions.

“And I sup­port his rep­re­sen­ta­tion on the plans,” he said, adding the next step in the process was as­sess­ing de­mand for the in­ter­na­tional ser­vices.

“We’ve al­ready done the pre­lim­i­nary in­ves­ti­ga­tions of the air­ports’ in­fras­truc­ture and bor­der agency re­sourc­ing re­quire­ments which are nec­es­sary to sup­port in­terna- tional air ser­vices,” he said. “We are now look­ing for­ward to Mackay Air­port and Whit­sun­day Coast Air­port demon­strat­ing de­mand for in­ter­na­tional ser­vices and a com­mit­ment from in­ter­na­tional air­lines to op­er­ate on­go­ing ser­vices.

“I would en­cour­age the res­i­dents of the north to show their sup­port for in­ter­na­tional flights as we con­tinue to work through the ap­provals process on th­ese ex­cit­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties.”

OP­TI­MISTIC: As­sis­tant Min­is­ter for Im­mi­gra­tion Senator James McGrath with MP Ge­orge Chris­tensen.

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