ASX listed property goliath Dexus is reportedly in the final stages of a $1 billion acquisition of Jandakot Airport in Western Australia, with sources confirming the sale of the 622-hectare airport to be well advanced on a party to party basis.
Dexus is Australia’s largest office landlord with a commercial property portfolio in excess of $14 billion, with the $1 billion airport acquisition considered a diversification.
Since privatisation, some 200-hectares of airport land (branded ‘Jandakot City’) have been developed for non-aviation purposes, with a focus on large-scale warehousing and distribution facilities to major companies, such as Halliburton, General Electric, Kmart and Grays Online. These companies hold leases on the airport land on terms of up to 25 years.
The current leaseholder of Jandakot Airport has advertised via its website that there is a further 80-hectares of non-aviation lettable area at the airport site.
“The privatisation of Australia’s airports has become an unmitigated disaster for the nation’s general aviation industry, with small to medium sized businesses forced out in preference for large-scale non-aviation commercial warehousing and distribution centres.” Benjamin Morgan, AOPA Australia CEO.
“We have greedy property developers running our nation’s critical aviation infrastructure and its heading for disaster.
“They’ve driven up the cost of access to record levels and have shown themselves to have no qualms with bankrupting our industry in the pursuit of even higher profits.
“The privatisation of airports was supposed to bring about investment in aviation! Where is it? Aviation has suffered catastrophically as a result of privatisation, with the only beneficiaries the property developers – it’s insane!
“General aviation users are continually told they cannot access property leases of up to 25 years, and are forced to accept outrageous increases in leasehold values, along with lease-terms that larger corporate leaseholders would laugh at.
“Meanwhile, the big-end of town gets looked after and the little guys get screwed.
“The failure of government to reign in the greed of these developers has created an environment where airport leaseholders are running rough-shot over small to medium sized business, comfortable that nobody will hold them to account.
“And, should they succeed in bankrupting our small to medium sized aviation businesses, they win again. No doubt ready to re-develop the remaining aviation land into more warehouses and distribution centres.
“Where the hell are our political leaders? Where is the Department of Infrastructure?
“Will the bloody government wake the hell up, this is ridiculous. ” he said.
Mr Benjamin Morgan
AOPA Australia Chief Executive
Mobile: 0415 577 724
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