Perth Airport and Qantas have resolved their latest dispute over unpaid fees, saying it is on mutually beneficial terms, with the facility withdrawing all lease termination and breach notices against the airline.
The airport’s chief executive Kevin Brown last week said the notices had been served because the national carrier had “unilaterally given itself a 100 per cent rent waiver, with no negotiation, on all 39 leases at Perth Airport in breach of their contractual obligations”.
Mr Brown said Perth Airport had not received payment for more than 10,000 Qantas flights into and out of the facility since February 1, which was neither fair nor sustainable.
He said Qantas continued to operate around 350 flights a week through the airport, demanding the full range of terminal and airfield services to generate profit from FIFO flights, but was refusing to pass the money on.
On Friday, the companies issued a joint statement saying they had reached a confidential agreement, which ensured ongoing Qantas FIFO flights, freight services and repatriation flights.
“The agreement provides greater certainty for Perth Airport on the payment of aviation and lease charges while Qantas has secured a partial abatement of payments to the airport in light of the particular challenges facing its operations due to the coronavirus crisis,” they said.
It’s not their first dispute over unpaid fees. In 2018, Perth Airport launched action against Qantas in the WA Supreme Court, claiming it was owed millions of dollars.
The companies have also made headway with a separate dispute, Qantas’ sale of the ageing Terminal 4 back to the airport.
They have agreed to a revised timeline for finalising the sale, with both parties committing to providing their submissions to an independent expert by June 30 for a determination on fair market value.
Perth Airport plans to consolidate all services into the newer Terminal 1 nearby in the long term.