Qantas Signs RAAF Tanker Contract

Sydney, 22 February 2007

Qantas Defence Services (QDS) today signed a contract with the Defence Material Organisation to provide support services for the Royal Australian Air Force's (RAAF) fleet of five A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport aircraft.

The Chief Executive Officer of Qantas, Mr Geoff Dixon, said the contract provided for the provision of technical, spares, training and maintenance support to the tanker fleet for the entire period the aircraft remained in service with the RAAF.

"Under this contract, QDS will establish a support organisation at the RAAF Base Amberley in 2008, in preparation for the arrival of the first tanker from Spain," Mr Dixon said.

"This will create new employment opportunities for up to 50 people within the Amberley facility."

The contract follows a successful joint bid in 2004 by EADS CASA and Qantas to provide the RAAF with a tanker version of the A330-200.

Mr Dixon said EADS CASA and Qantas would convert four A330-200s into the RAAF tanker variant in Australia. He said the fifth aircraft, already converted, would be the first delivered directly to the RAAF from Spain.

"Qantas' experience in the operation and maintenance of its own A330 commercial aircraft fleet means the very best skills and expertise will be available in providing future maintenance support to the RAAF's tanker fleet here in Australia."

Mr Dixon said QDS would continue to provide maintenance support for the Australian military from its Richmond, Sydney, Canberra and Amberley maintenance facilities.

Issued by Qantas Corporate Communication (3536)