Airservices is Australia's air navigation service provider - we provide air traffic control, aviation rescue and fire fighting and air navigation services.

Annual Report 2017–18: 01 Corporate overview

“Safety is our number one priority. We are proud that global benchmarking consistently places Airservices as one of the top air navigation service providers for safety in the world.”


Our purpose is to provide safe, secure, efficient and environmentally responsible air navigation and aviation rescue fire fighting services that are valued by the aviation industry.

We are funded through levies on our customers and capital raised from debt markets. Our prices are set by the Airservices Board after extensive consultation with industry, and are subject to oversight by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. Airservices does not receive any government funding.

Safety is our number one priority. We are proud that global benchmarking consistently places Airservices as one of the top air navigation service providers for safety in the world.

To ensure that we continue to be recognised as an industry leader, we deliver environmentally responsible services that are valued by our customers and supported by customer-centric investment in innovation and commercially rigorous decision making.

Enabling legislation

Airservices was established by the Air Services Act 1995 (Cth), and is designated as a corporate Commonwealth entity under the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (Cth) (PGPA Act).

Our functions under the Air Services Act include:

  • providing facilities for the safe navigation of aircraft within Australian-administered airspace
  • promoting and fostering civil aviation in Australia and overseas
  • providing air traffic services, aviation rescue fire fighting services, aeronautical information, radio navigation and telecommunications services.

In undertaking our functions, we must regard the safety of air navigation as our most important consideration, and protect the environment as far as practicable from the effects of aircraft operations.

A range of other legislation informs our operations. More information is available at

Corporate governance

We are governed by a Board whose members are appointed by the Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, the Hon. Michael McCormack MP.(1) Our Board consists of eight non‑Executive Directors, including the Chairman, Deputy Chair and one Executive Director who is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), appointed by the Board. The Board is committed to best practice in corporate governance.

The Board decides the objectives, strategies and policies of Airservices and ensures that it fulfils its statutory functions in a proper, efficient and effective manner. The Board regularly evaluates its own performance and the performance of its committees.

Further information about Board membership, meetings and committees is available in Appendix 1.

1 Previous ministers include the Hon. Barnaby Joyce MP 20 December 2017 – 26 February 2018; and the Hon. Darren Chester MP 8 February 2016 – 20 December 2017.

Strategic direction

Our 2017–18 Corporate Plan outlines the initiatives and performance outcomes we seek to achieve over a five year period in support of our vision and purpose.

The corporate plan was produced in accordance with the Air Services Act and the PGPA Act.

Our publications are available at

Minister’s Statement of Expectations and Airservices Statement of Intent

The Government provided the Airservices Board with its Statement of Expectations on 9 May 2017 for the period 22 May 2017 to 30 June 2019.

Both the Statement of Expectations and Airservices Statement of Intent are included in Appendix 2.

Ministerial directions and Government policy orders

Our Minister can issue directions that inform the performance of our functions. Four ministerial directions were current in 2017–18, relating to:

  • handling aircraft noise complaints at Sydney and other federal airports (issued 29 May 1996)
  • progressive implementation of the Sydney Long Term Operating Plan (issued 30 July 1997)
  • responsibilities in relation to the environmental effects of aircraft (issued 3 May 1999)
  • providing approach radar services at specific airports (issued 31 August 2004).

Airservices must comply with government issued policy orders. During the 2017–18 reporting period, no government policy orders applied to Airservices.

Our locations

Our head office is in Canberra. At 30 June 2018, we employed 3,534 people across Australia, including:

  • 1,067 operational air traffic controllers, working from two air traffic services centres in Melbourne and Brisbane, two terminal control units and 29 towers at international and regional airports
  • 843 operational aviation rescue fire fighters and station managers, supporting our services at 26 of Australia’s biggest airports.

Further details about our workforce is included in Appendix 3, and more information about our facilities is available at

Organisational structure

Our CEO and executive team lead Airservices. Our operating model focuses on our two service delivery lines: air traffic management and aviation rescue fire fighting services.


Figure 1: Airservices Australia’s organisational structure at 30 June 2018


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