Improvements at Sunshine Coast Airport welcomed

Media Release

WT040/2016

05 February 2016

Improved Border Force facilities and services announced today at the Sunshine Coast Airport have been welcomed by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss.

“I am very pleased to see these new arrangements. They will further strengthen the Sunshine Coast Airport's international ambitions, and the region's economy through increased international tourism activity,” Mr Truss said.

“These improvements have come about because of the steady increase in international passengers through the airport and they show the Government is investing in this emerging international airport.”

The upgrade is being funded as part of a 2015–16 Budget allocation of $23.8 million over four years to support the clearance of seasonal flights at Sunshine Coast Airport and regular international flights at Townsville Airport.

Refurbishments to take place at Sunshine Coast Airport will include:

  • an extensive close-circuit television network,
  • electronic examination facilities, and
  • trace detection technologies to support the Government's focus on stronger border security

Departure eGates will be introduced at Sunshine Coast Airport in 2016–17, bringing it into line with other major airports.

Mr Truss said the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development has been working with the airport and Border Force officials in relation to border agency facilities at the airport.

“At the end of that process, we hope to be able to designate the Sunshine Coast Airport as a ‘restricted use international airport’—formalising the scope for the airport to handle international services on an ongoing basis, subject to passenger demand and the allocation of resources by the border agencies,” he said.

“Already we have seen Air New Zealand expand their winter seasonal services to New Zealand to include new summer services.

“However it is notable that even before summer services commenced, Sunshine Coast international passenger movements in 2015 were 19.6 per cent higher than the previous year.”