4CA - Queensland's Home for Fake News

4CA - Queensland's Home for Fake News
4CA - Queensland's Home for Fake News Led by John "Cueball" Mackenzie

30 April 2012


While working a polling booth on Saturday, several of the candidate workers got into a discussion about the $8M in taxpayer (OUR) money promised by the LNP in order to get an increase in airlines to start servicing Cairns.

Gavin "Don't Rape Me" King was boasting today about discussions with Tiger Air to start servicing Cairns, and how this was all made possible "due to the LNP $8M growing tourism fund".  This is a load of bullshit.  As everyone knows, Tiger was already servicing Cairns when their whole operation went pear shaped and was shut down by the regulators with safety concerns.  Why would it take cash from the LNP Qld government to get them to restart service to Cairns?  ONLY BECAUSE TIGER, AND EVERY OTHER AIRLINE, KNOWS THE MONEY IS ON OFFER NOW.  Tiger had made clear long before the QLD state election that Melbourne-Cairns service would be restarted, as well as Sydney-Cairns service.  But those clever managers at Tiger Air are now demanding cash from Campbell and Gavin to do what they were going to do anyway.  A masterstroke of business management!

To understand what happened to our tourism service in 2008-2009, one has to understand not the global economy, but what went wrong at the airlines, like Qantas.

Qantas and other airlines in the region are are on a similar "life cycle" in their aircraft.  In anticipation of the EOL (end-of-life) in some of the QF fleet, they began ordering replacement aircraft - for the 747's, Airbus 380s.  And for the 767's and other medium-wide-body aircraft, Boeing 787s.  These orders were on the books in 2005, for 2008.

However both aircraft experienced serious delays, requiring QF and other companies to make a decision.  Pay for expensive "D-Checks" (overhauls) on some of the fleet including all the elderly 767's.  This was not something Qantas was prepared to do, as the recession began, and they sold off these 767's.  This was the reason Australian Airlines, set up to hub in Cairns, disappeared.  At the time Australian Airlines was closed down, it was profitable and even with the recession had good loads going forward.

Other airlines were in a similar situation.  With fewer aircraft available, the airlines began shutting down service to less-profitable destinations like Cairns.  And the accuracy of this observation is born out by the fact that during this period of service cutbacks to Cairns, Cathay Pacific continued to ADD service!  Why?  Because Cathay isn't on the same aircraft cycle as is Qantas, JAL, ANA, and others in our region.  So they have continued to bring heavy loads of tourists into Cairns!

As the flood of new airplane deliveries finally starts, the airlines who've ordered these planes have no choice but to expand service - and this expansion will primarily occur to less-profitable tourism destinations like Cairns that were discontinued during the aircraft shortage.  Why?  Because you make NOTHING from aircraft sitting on the ground - better you make something.  And "route profitability" is a difficult thing to quantify - when a destination is feeding traffic into an airlines total route system, a loss-making destination can have the effect of pushing other routes into profitability.  

The result?  Big aircraft deliveries to Chinese airlines will see one or more of them begin service to Cairns.  Likewise Singapore service, as well as increased Japanese service.  All of these among the first to start receiving 787's, the replacement aircraft of choice in Asia.  (ANA and JAL both have received their first 787's).  Even United Airlines (which has taken over Continental and the CO service from Guam) is getting 787's - with their first use scheduled to be Houston Texas to Auckland, a route never before flown!  Can San Francisco - Cairns be far behind?

The LNP is going to take credit for new service into Cairns with their "Attracting Aviation Fund", when in fact it's just the natural course of events that will have occurred no matter who was in government!  $8M of our money is going to be "gifted" to the airlines to get these services started - services that the airlines have long been planning anyway.  The real gains, which should have been realised by Kevin Rudd's announced "forced triangulation" plan for new Australian service, were never seen anywhere because no one had the balls to enforce it.  The $8M should go to reducing the airline charges for all the airlines, not as "bonuses" by political leeches.  


Bus. Op. said...

A master stroke of business management alright. Christ I wouldnt mind having the LNP give me money for doing what I intended to do anyway.

T. Asquith said...

A list of international airlines that used to operate regular scheduled services into Cairns and now don't: Japan Airlines, Garuda Indonesian, Malaysian, Singapore Airlines, Thai, Asiana, and Qantas. Why are they not operating here now? Yield! Profitability! Return on assets. And Destination Cairns was unprofitable - or not profitable enough, so the assets (aeroplanes) were more profitably utilised to other destinations. An economic fact!
Not many years ago, The Cairns Post, ignoring such economic facts, ran a naive campaign suggesting that the lack of a 'duel-runway' at Cairns Airport was the reason more airlines didn't fly here. In their classic cargo-cult build-it-and-they-will-come world view, more runways attract more airlines (ignoring the fact that the single one we have was totally underutilised, then as it still is today).
Similarly, the same cargo-cult mindset now applies to dredging the inlet. Spend millions of dollars and dredge a million tons of silt from the Inlet (and dump it 'somewhere' on the reef) and more, and bigger cruise ships will come. Well, let us see the economic business modelling that supports such a proposition. I bet London to a brick, it doesn't exist.

T. Asquith said...

PS: Australian Airlines was not profitable when it ceased! If it was, it would still exist. Example: The Cairns to Kuta Kinabalu (Sabah, Malaysia) route was under-written by Tourism Malaysia ... basically they had to pay for the seats that AO could not sell. It was not ever viable and the arrangement ceased as soon as contractually possible. Again, back to the future, this is what our Assistant Tourism Minister is advocating: Tax payer dollars underwriting inherently unprofitable air services to Cairns. More good money after bad.

K Nevill said...

Great article, more informative than cairns post's light weight writing. Keep up the good work HBW!

Anonymous said...

Cathay continuing has nothing to do with life cycles of it's aircraft, it is because the belly of the plane is full of seafood exports.

Anonymous said...

They'll claim credit for the new car park in Grafton street next !

Marge was on radio yesterday claiming that "her" council was in better financial shape than the one Kevin Byrne left behind.

A still bitter (and now vindictive) Kevvie was on next and had nothing nice to say about Marge and spent the next 10 minutes bragging about all his achievements and how the new council was basically a continuation of his.

On the bright side, only a small % of people voted for the likes of Jenny Glaze and Barry Neal. That makes me think that Cairns is not comletely "boganised".

I think voters were looking for some stability more than anything else.If that's what they will get remains to be seen.

I think Val was gracious in defeat and I don't think we will not see the bitter, nasty hate campaign that was waged by the previous losers.Of course the local media wouldn't give them the opportunity anyway...

Dean said...

K Nevill, couldn't agree more. Sick of loading up the Post website to their inane drivel. This is much better actual reportage.

I don't disagree with the principle of subsidising flights, just like we subsidise marketing, but the direction of it is key. Making profitable routes simply more profitable is not the solution. Attracting new routes is the key. Something only just under the profit margin, where a mil or two will mean a few thousand more visitors, leading to eventual profitability of the route. If it attracts Tiger to fly Cairns-Singapore, then it could be worth it.

Curly Joe said...

Governments must be "seen to be doing something" whether they really are is irrelevant.

Dean said...

Curly Joe, apparently Governments should only be seen to be doing something as long as they're not showing any leadership or vision. They should simply follow what the bogans have been led to believe by various media sources.

Any variation from the conservative viewpoint by a government is socialism. Captialism won the cold war don't you know, just see how well America is going instead of China. Or Pakistan instead of India. Oh, wait....who won the cold war again?

Anonymous said...

Gee whiz... I rarely listen to Cueball's program - NUMB NUTS calls it a 'show' - does he understand what the meaning of the word 'show' is? Are any of his listeners intelligent enough to explain to him what etymology is? Any rate, I gave up listening to his 'show' (sorry) several years ago, when he had another CHROME DOME in the sycophant's chair - R. E. Davis - lapping up his cajoling garbage. 4CA must be the meeting place of all the big desert heads in the joint. Thank Christ for HBW and the ABC. Contributed by FAT BALLS, Cairns North.

Anonymous said...

Clutching at straws now aren't we......yawn.

Kay said...

Just a reminder of course, that if we had the Entertainment Precinct, we would be able to advertise show, hotel,airline packages to Cairns, all around Australia and S.E. Asia. A top show appearing in Cairns for several weeks would have increased numbers of passengers to Cairns. Instead our Mayor Manning says, "My wife and I fly to Sydney and Melbourne to see shows." Then he says, "People only come here to see the reef and rainforest and go up to Port Douglas." With that sort of narrow minded thinking, we can only expect to see the tourist industry continue to tank.

Anonymous said...

The first shots have been fired on 4CA in the battle to develop Taylor Point. Observe as the cries of "costs to rate payers" and 'job creation" get louder..

Anonymous said...

HBW, I told you and all earlier that our Masthead Mayor would use football anologies to explain to us his position on any matter. Well he didn't let me down. Channel 7 News last night he used the football field anology to explian his point. Charlie. PS I don't know why I was watching Channel 7 as they are linked to Cueball and their news service is not improved with comments from Cueball.

Anonymous said...

Old Masthead was talking about Munro Martyn Park on cueballs program yesterday something about turning it into an "outdoor theatre".

Anonymous said...

heard shorty on mackenzie yesterday ,i think his name has something to do with his grey matter ie.sandwich short of a picnic

Anonymous said...

Is he the annoying, obnoxious and rude dickhead who thinks we knows everything, because he has been in Singapore a few times ?

If he spoke to me the way he speaks on that show, I'd slap the bastard down.

An ignorant racist, misogynist, xenophobic pig if i ever heard one. Even the self-serving McKenzie should recognize that. It is a disgrace that he allows this total deadshit to air his pathetic and disgusting views on air.

Tony Hillier said...

There's a great flamenco show at the Tanks Arts Centre tomorrow night (Friday) ... one guaranteed to lift those 'ol election blues:

Anonymous said...

Sorry I mixed him up with another fuckwit, "Bill from Brinsmead". All these clowns sound the same. Bill is so rude and outspoken that McKenzie actually censored him today.

Taylor Point was brought up again. There is obviously a campaign under way to reverse the decision.

Curly Joe said...

Most of the Council decisions made when Val Schier was Mayor, preserving land from development, will be overturned. The Whitfield land will also be overturned as well as Paylor Point. Unity have the numbers to do whatever Byrne wants.