Qld fires first shot to bring Qantas home


Queensland has fired its first shot in the battle to lure thousands of jobs to Brisbane, lodging a "strong" proposal to bring Qantas home

The State Government this week sent its first bid for Qantas to relocate its Sydney and Jetstar's Melbourne bases.

Treasurer Cameron Dick, who earlier this year spent $200 million to keep Virgin Australia in Queensland, declined to be drawn on the detail of the proposal or Queensland's chances of securing Qantas.

A spokeswoman for Mr Dick said the Government was always looking for more jobs for Queenslanders.

In September Qantas floated plans to move its headquarters and thousands of jobs to the highest-bidding Australian state - creating a bidding war between the states.

Up for grabs is Qantas' head office, currently located in Mascot, and Jetstar's Collingwood head office.

However Qantas Group has also flagged the possibility of relocating Brisbane's heavy maintenance facility and 750 jobs to New South Wales or Victoria if those governments provided higher incentives.

Qantas declined to comment on the proposal process, however it is understood the airline has been in talks with high-level Queensland Government officials. 


A Qantas maintenance facility at Brisbane Airport
A Qantas maintenance facility at Brisbane Airport


A Brisbane Airport Corporation spokeswoman said the airport had the capacity to house Qantas and Jetstar's entire operation.

"There is no better strategic location for the Qantas Group than Queensland and Brisbane, specifically," she said.

"Brisbane Airport Corporation is ready to support and work with the Queensland Government to deliver the best possible solution for all of Qantas' property consolidation needs."

University of New South Wales School of Aviation Professor Tony Webber said Qantas moving to Queensland could be the most significant aviation shift in a generation. 

"Getting the Qantas name on a building up there would be a huge plus," he said.

"Any time where you have the opportunity to drag a couple of thousand employees from one state to another, the multiplier effect associated with that, and with a name like Qantas - I would have thought that's a major coup."

Dr Webber said Qantas remained the 'golden goose' of domestic aviation. 
"I think it would be a major steal, potentially 2000 or 3000 jobs shifting to Queensland," he said. 

"The injection of payroll tax, stealing business away from New South Wales would deliver major kudos."

Dr Webber said Queensland was most likely in a fight with Victoria, with Qantas CEO Alan Joyce already meeting Victorian Premier Dan Andrews to discuss moving the airline south.







Originally published as Qld fires first shot to bring Qantas home