Australian Government guidance on the Optus data breach

Civil Aviation Legislation Amendment (Mutual Recognition with New Zealand) Act 2006

Information for Interested Parties


The Civil Aviation Legislation (Mutual Recognition with New Zealand) Act 2006 amended the Civil Aviation Act 1988 to implement Australia's part of the joint commitment between Australia and New Zealand for the mutual recognition of air operator certification.

The legislation enables the mutual recognition of Air Operator Certicates (AOC) for operation of aircraft of more than 30 seats or 15,000kg, as issued by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) in Australia and the Civil Aviation Authority of NZ (CAANZ).

The legislation provides for:

  • air operator certificates issued to an aircraft operator by the operator's ‘home’ safety regulator (either the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) in Australia or the Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand (CAANZ)) to be recognised in both Australia and New Zealand, for aviation activities in the both countries;

  • the ‘home’ regulator to be determined through criteria that must be met by aircraft operators, generally this involves the location of the head office etc. The ‘home’ aviation safety regulator (CASA or CAANZ) will be the best placed to provide effective safety oversight of the operations, and so issue the AOC with ANZA privileges;

  • the power for the ‘host’ safety regulator to issue a temporary stop notice to an aircraft operator holding an AOC with ANZA privileges issued by the other safety regulator, if the operator is perceived to present a serious risk to aviation safety. The notice would require the operator to cease operations, in part or whole, for a maximum of seven days during which time the ‘home’ safety regulator would take any required action;

  • a High Level Arrangement between the Governments set the scope of the initiative as agreed by Ministers PDF: 169 KB.

  • an obligation for CASA to consult the Director of CAANZ in accordance with the Operational Arrangement before taking any action under the Act or Regulations that would or might affect the ANZA activities in New Zealand that an Australian AOC with ANZA privileges authorises. There is similar provision in New Zealand's corresponding legislation;

  • the ability for CASA to disclose information to the Director of CAANZ, for a purpose connected with the ANZA Mutual Recognition Agreement. This is necessary for the effective implementation of mutual recognition, including monitoring of an operator's compliance with the Act and Regulations. New Zealand has equivalent legislation;

  • the extension of the monitoring powers of CASA investigators under Part IIIA of the Act (Investigation powers), to permit these powers to be used at the request of CAANZ to enforce their Act and rules.


Airlines seeking an Australian AOC with ANZA privileges will first need to apply to CASA. CASA will forward the application to the Secretary of the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development, who will assess the applicant's eligibility in terms of the criteria set out in the ANZA mutual recognition agreements.

  • The most important consideration in this regard will be whether the airline is covered by the 2002 Australia-New Zealand ‘Open Skies’ Air Services Agreement:
    • designated Australian airlines will be able to conduct international air services between Australia and New Zealand using an AOC with ANZA privileges; and
    • domestic air services in the host country will only be open to airlines classed as SAM airlines (named for the 1996 Single Aviation Market Arrangement), which have to meet more stringent ownership and control criteria.

For more information regarding designated airlines and SAM airlines, refer to Article 2 of the Agreement between the Government of Australia and the Government of New Zealand Relating to Air Services done at Auckland, 8 August 2002, known as the 2002 Australia-New Zealand ‘Open Skies’ Air Services Agreement.

If the airline meets the eligibility requirements for mutual recognition, the Secretary of the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development or his delegate will then advise CASA, who will proceed with an assessment of whether the airline meets the necessary safety requirements for the issue of an AOC with ANZA privileges among other things, CASA will need to determine whether it is able to provide effective safety oversight of the airline.

Eligibility of New Zealand airlines for a New Zealand AOC with ANZA privileges will be assessed by the Secretary of the Ministry for Transport in New Zealand, with safety assessment undertaken by the Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand. An airline holding an AOC with ANZA privileges will still be required to comply with the general laws and rules of the air applicable to operations in both their home country and the host country. For example, New Zealand airlines conducting passenger services in Australia using a New Zealand AOC with ANZA privileges will still have to comply with Australian laws with respect to the environment, curfew, aviation security and carrier's liability to name a few.

Airlines operating to, from or within Australia using an AOC with ANZA privileges will have to hold an Australian aviation security programme (see below).

Transport Security Program

A transport security program is a preventative security plan that sets out security measures and procedures to be implemented to safeguard against acts of unlawful interference with aviation. This section outlines who is required to have a transport security program what it must address and where to go for more detailed information and guidance.

Transport security programs are required to ensure that industry participants have a planned and risk-based approach to the management of aviation security.

Who is affected?

All of the following aviation industry participants are required to have a transport security program:

  • operators of security controlled airports
  • operators of prescribed air services
  • operators of facilities that have direct access to airside areas of airports
  • regulated air cargo agents
  • Airservices Australia

Even if you are not required to have your own transport security program you may be affected by someone else's. If you have been given the relevant parts of another industry participant's transport security program you must comply with the requirements of those parts which may have been developed in consultation with you.

Requirements of a Transport Security Program

Transport security programs must address a number of general requirements, including:

  • how your aviation security activities will be managed and coordinated with the operations of other relevant parties
  • the technology, equipment and procedures you will use to maintain aviation security
  • how you will respond to aviation security incidents
  • practices and procedures you have to protect security information
  • other industry participants covered by the program
  • the consultation undertaken in the preparation of the program.

Transport security programs must also contain an outline of your local security risk context, including consideration of location, seasonal and operational factors, a list of general threats and security risk events and an outline of what must be protected.

Certain industry participants must, in addition, have a program with specific requirements. These requirements are detailed in the Regulations and briefly outlined as follows.

Developing a Transport Security Program

The legislation outlines a number of requirements about the form of a transport security program. For example, the program must be in writing, submitted to the Department for approval and must be accompanied by relevant maps and supporting documentation.

Guidance material, including templates, to help you develop your transport security program can be found at

To Apply

AOC with ANZA privileges: to apply for an AOC with ANZA privileges see details on CASA's website at

Australian Aviation Security Programme: guidance material for the preparation of transport security programs by Prescribed Air Services has been developed.