Wednesday 9 March 2011

Deal between China and Australia must benefit Cairns

The Federal government announcement between China and Australia should substantially help our damaged Far North Queensland economy and tourism industry.

A deal struck for Brisbane airport has been kept secret, according to DJ Hunt of the Queensland Party.

The agreement with the Chinese government, is to increase the number of travellers between Australia and China, placing Cairns in the box seat that should establish Cairns as an air hub with Asia.

Queensland Party candidate for Cairns, Darren Hunt says the government needs to fast track a deal outh China Airlines or Air Asia, for direct flights to Cairns to the same amount they did for South China Airlines to fly to Brisbane.

"50,000 visitors wanted to come here but couldn’t. If those visitors would have spent $1,000 here, that’s $50million our economy missed out on," Darren Hunt says. "The government’s original decision, to subsidise direct flights to Brisbane instead of Cairns, shows where the governments focus is and always will be and that is South East Queensland.”

“It is time that the Far North was given a realistic long term solution to help our economy recover. The Premier can no longer hide behind blaming the Chinese government for not completing this deal given the Federal government announcement that an extra 4,000 visits have been approved by the Chinese government," DJ Hunt says. "Providing the same subsidy given to Brisbane would bring huge amounts of tourists through our area and give our economy a much needed and long term boost. ”

“The deal the government struck for Brisbane airport has been kept secret," DJ Hunt says. "The people of the Far North deserve to know what they missed out on. The Queensland Party calls on the government to honour their promise to make public the amount of the subsidy given so that it can be determined if a similar amount can be provided for the same deal for Cairns."

"I believe the people of the Far North deserve that much."


KitchenSlut said...

DJ Hunt can you provide more info on your allegation of the subsidy? I am aware that Tourism Qld provided supporting marketing but the only otherwise google I can find is what you have alleged here with no references?

My perspective is that this is an excellent deal for Cairns. If there is a subsidy for BNE this is not necessarily negative and could in fact be positive for Cairns?

This deal is excellent but in broader terms .... no .... we will not be an aviation 'hub' as understood within the aviation industry?

Many of these issues have been on the table for years and have now been delivered on some aspects where previously Warren Entsch failed miserably in his previous tenure?!

You are delusional to think otherwise and give further discredibility to the Qld Party where you have offered nothing positive except a culture of competitive entitlements which I reject.

Al said...

Cairns is just one of scores of places in the World which, without any other sound economic base, relies on the fickleness of tourism.
In the 90's, we used to have several plane-loads of Japanese tourists arriving every day (Cairns was their 'the place to go' in much the same way as Fiji was to Australians in the 70's). The Japanese predominated so much that Cairns started to resemble Japan in many ways: Daikyo owned and controlled practically everything, insulting locals to the point of making them change their currency to another form of Yen (cutely renamed 'Cruise Currency) to visit parts of their own country; Green and Fitzroy Islands. And even though a huge percentage of the money Japanese inbound tourism created went back to Japan, our parochial short-sighted political and tourism 'leaders', blissfully happy with all their eggs in one basket, thought the gravy train would last for ever. Then the sun went down; Japan went into economic meltdown, the planes stopped. That's when a severe case cargo cultism took hold. The Cairns Post, in one of its more hysterical ill-thought-out campaigns thought the answer lay in duplicating the runway at Cairns Airport. Bold headlines berated our politicians for not supporting the spending millions of taxpayer dollars on a mad-cap 'build it and they will come" scheme to attract more planes and become a hub. It was never explained how a hub could be created in a city which had no geographical or economic attributes to be one, and readers of the Post at that time were asked to assume that aeroplanes have a magnetic-like attraction to multiple runways. Now it seems we are having another delusional bout from DJ Hunt of the Queensland Party. Hunt wants government to create a hub and subsidise foreign-owned airlines to come here in the vain hope of another boom bout of tourism. Here's an idea for DJ Hunt: Why not lobby instead for that alleged subsidy to be given to Australian domestic airlines in an effort to attract more domestic tourists making Cairns (in terms of price) a destination comparable to Bali or Phucket. Such a move would stimulate the Cairns economy and help keep Aussie dollars in the country. Granted, not for everyone, but we have the climate, a dollar is a dollar, travel insurance is not a necessity, and your Medicare card work here.