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About the Commission

Role of the Commission | Members of the Commission | The Secretariat

Role of the Commission

The Commission was established under the International Air Services Commission Act 1992. The object of the Act is to enhance the welfare of Australians by promoting economic efficiency through competition in the provision of international air services, resulting in:

  • increased responsiveness by airlines to the needs of consumers, including an increased range of choices and benefits; and
  • growth in Australian tourism and trade; and
  • the maintenance of Australian carriers capable of competing effectively with airlines of foreign countries

The Commission's role is to determine the outcomes of applications by existing and prospective Australian airlines for capacity and route entitlements available under air services arrangements. These determinations allocate the available capacity on a route to one or more carriers and set conditions, where these are considered appropriate. The Commission may conduct a review of a determination at any time, either at the request of the carrier concerned or if the Commission believes that there may be grounds for doing so. The Commission is also responsible for reviewing determinations after a specified period and providing advice to the Minister for Transport about any matter referred to the Commission by the Minister concerning international air operations.

In allocating capacity, the Commission assesses the merits of claims by applicants under specified public benefit criteria. These criteria are detailed in Policy Statements issued, from time to time, by the Minister.

The Government, through the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development, continues to have the responsibility for administering and negotiating Australia's air services arrangements. In this role, the Department is responsible for maintaining a Register of Available Capacity for use by the Commission and applicants. This register details the capacity available under each air services arrangement, and is updated to reflect changes in capacity entitlements arising from new negotiations and determinations by the Commission. The Department is also responsible for making operational decisions that authorise carriers to fly on each route based on the Commission's determinations.

Members of the Commission

The Commission comprises a part-time chairwoman and two part-time members. Its office in Canberra is assisted by a small Secretariat.

Dr Jill Walker, Chairwoman

Ms Jill WalkerDr Jill Walker, (formally appointed as the Chairwoman for the IASC on 9 February 2011), is currently a Commissioner at the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). She is Chair of the Mergers Review Committee. Prior to her appointment at the ACCC, Dr Walker worked as an economic consultant with LECG Ltd, Network Economics Consulting Group (NECG) and CRA International. Her work spanned a wide range of industries and included the preparation of advice, reports, submissions and the presentation of expert evidence in the Federal Court of Australia.

Dr Ian Douglas, Member

Dr Ian DouglasDr Ian Douglas is a Senior Lecturer in Aviation Management, School of Aviation, at the University of New South Wales, specialising in the areas of air transport economics, airline marketing strategy, airline fleet and schedule planning. He has also been a consultant for Malaysia Airlines, Thai Airways International, Bain & Co Singapore, Icebox Advertising, Air Bagan and Tourism Queensland. Prior to academia and consulting, Dr Douglas had a 25 year career with Qantas managing pricing, business development, routes, annual plans and strategic planning and market development.

Mr John King, Member

Mr John KingMr John King attended Melbourne University and the Australian National University where he graduated in Law. He had a 20-year career at Ansett including positions in human resources, international sales, industry affairs before establishing the Pacific Airlines Division. This division operated Air Vanuatu, Polynesian Airlines and Ansett's own Pacific services.

In 1986, Mr King established the Aviation and Tourism Management Pty Ltd, a consultancy providing strategic and policy guidance to airlines, governments and the tourism industries. Clients included the World Bank for whom he performed studies in Africa, Central Asia, the Caucuses, South East Asia and the South Pacific. For the World Tourism Organisation he worked extensively in China and the Pacific.

Aviation clients included Continental Airlines, Thai Airways, International, Gulf Air, Air Malta, Cathay Pacific Airways and British Airways.

Advice to governments was focussed on the tourism—aviation interface and he developed a number of specific carrier attraction strategies.

In 1999, he was appointed Chairman of the Travel Compensation Fund where he served for seven years. In 2007, he was appointed Chairman of the ASX-listed travel agency group, Jetset Travelworld Ltd, and served for two and half years before retiring.

Mr King holds a Master's Degree in Transport Management from the University of Sydney where he serves on the Board of Advice of the Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies.

He is a member of the Air Transport Research Society, the German Aviation Research Society and a Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society.

The Secretariat

The Commission is assisted in its work by a small secretariat. The secretariat is staffed by officers of the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development. The secretariat is headed by an Executive Director, supported by a Senior Adviser and an Office Manager. These officers provide advice and assistance to the Commissioners on all aspects of the Commission’s operations.

Further, the Commission has delegated certain powers and functions [PDFPDF: 367 KB] [docReader icon] to the Executive Director, and in the absence of the Executive Director, the Senior Adviser. These arrangements enable the delegate to make a range of determinations and decisions on behalf of the Commissioners. Generally, these relate to cases that are straightforward. More complex matters are dealt with by the Commissioners.


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Last Updated: 14 October, 2013