Qantas remains cool on Brisbane Airport second runway

By David Flynn, October 19 2012
Qantas remains cool on Brisbane Airport second runway

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce has likened Brisbane Airport Corporation's request for up-front funding for a second runway to Apple asking customers to pay now for an iPhone 10 which they wouldn't actually get for years to come.

"That's like Apple asking you, its customers ... you get an iPhone10 maybe in 10 years time – it will fix the maps problem, it will have a super-duper camera – you've got to pay for it now," Joyce told a business luncheon in Brisbane yesterday.

"I don't think (Apple customers) would be very keen on doing it and airlines are not very keen on paying for an infrastructure that's not giving us any benefits today," he said.

The Brisbane Airport Corporation, a privately-held company which owns and operates the Queensland capital's domestic and international airport, is asking airlines to pay on-going fees towards the $1.3 billion cost of the new runway during its construction.

Joyce considers this too big an ask, preffering to wait until the runway is completed in 2020, although he suggested that 2020 would be "potentially early for when the runway needs to be".

BAC chief executive Julieanne Alroe counters that the airline contributions would, in the scheme of things, be relatively small.

"We think a couple of dollars on a landing fee, it's a cup of coffee, is a small price for people to pay to see Queensland growing and growing and growing" she said.

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David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.


05 Mar 2012

Total posts 26

Err, how would anything ever get built based on this reasoning?


21 Oct 2012

Total posts 2

A very odd comment given that Qantas had ordered 65 Boeing 787 aircraft with a list price at the time of A$13 billion years in advance of delivery. 

Qantas' current website as of October 2012 states the following after the first round of order cancellations in 2009 of 15 787 aircraft.

"Qantas has selected the Boeing 787 as the cornerstone of its domestic and international fleet renewal program. Under the fleet plan, the Qantas Group has firm orders for 50 Boeing 787 aircraft. The first Dreamliner is expected to be delivered around mid 2013."

The comparison of critical airport infrastructure against a $700 phone is hard to fathom. One has to question the leadership and foresight of this company. As of recent times Qantas has lost direction and is clearly following the lead set by Virgin Australia, which is based in Brisbane, has strategic alliances and is setting the bar higher in terms of its business class offering.


Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2011

Total posts 732

Ordering 787 aircraft is actually a capital investment for QF itself, rather than funding upfront a runway which they will only get the use of, have to pay fees, besides the fact that they have no actual say in how the runway should be utilised (as opposed to the aircraft they order) and they share it with others. Different things altogether.

Must admit the phone comparison was poorly chosen as a comparison and does not make sense, I can see their hesitation in investing in Brisbane airport. Feel it is up to the airport owner (Macquarie?) or even the Queensland government to provide infrastructure (they could choose to raise fees to get funding). Especially because of the fact that no airline will ever have stakes in the aiport, hence their investment would yield no return and be seen as a loss.

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