Airservices Australia, established in July 1995 under the Air Services Act 1995, is a Government-owned commercial authority responsible for the management of air traffic control over 11% of the world's surface. Its principal functions are: air traffic control and airspace management; aeronautical information; communications; radio navigation aids; search and rescue alerting; and airport rescue and fire fighting services.
Airservices Australia works with other government organisations concerned with aviation policy, safety and regulation in Australia, namely the Department of Transport and Regional Services, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority and the Bureau of Air Safety Investigation.
Airservices Australia has a prominent role in the implementation of the global Communications, Navigation and Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) system, which uses satellite technology to provide a more efficient air traffic system.
Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA)
CASA was established as an independent statutory authority on 6 July 1995. Its primary focus is delivering aviation safety to the Australian public. It does this by: setting aviation standards and rules; licensing pilots and aviation engineers; certifying aircraft and operators; carrying out safety surveillance; enforcing safety standards and rules; providing regulatory oversight of the national airways system, air traffic services and rescue and fire fighting services; and actively assisting the aviation industry to maintain high safety levels through education, training advice and consultation.
CASA reports to the Federal Minister for Transport and Regional Services.
Australia is one of the 185 members (as at 31 July 2001) of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and is a member of the 33 member governing Council. Australia is also represented on the 15 member Air Navigation Commission which is responsible for drafting international standards and procedures for the safety and efficiency of air navigation. In addition, Australia participates in the South Pacific Forum, meetings of the Directors-General of Civil Aviation for Asia and the Pacific, and aviation-related work undertaken in APEC.
As at 30 June 2001, Australia has air services agreements of full treaty status with 40 countries. Renegotiation of capacity and route rights has occurred under most of these to accommodate traffic growth on international routes to and from Australia. Agreements with 13 countries will be upgraded to treaty status once the draft agreements are incorporated into domestic law. Australia has four air services arrangements of less than treaty status.
These agreements and arrangements enable airlines of Australia and its bilateral partners to operate a network of international air services to and from Australia.
International Air Services Commission (IASC)
The International Air Services Commission (IASC) is an independent statutory authority responsible for the allocation of capacity and route entitlements negotiated under air services arrangements to existing and prospective Australian international carriers.
The Commission was established on 1 July 1992 following the Commonwealth Government's decision to allow Australian airlines other than Qantas to fly internationally. The Government decided that the process of allocating capacity to Australian airlines should be at arms length from the negotiation function.
The IASC works within a legislative and policy framework laid down by the Government. Under the International Air Services Act 1992, the IASC objectives are to foster competition, consumer benefits, tourism, trade and the maintenance of competitive Australian airlines.
When considering applications for capacity, the Commission takes into account public benefit criteria outlined in a policy statement issued by the Minister for Transport and Regional Services.