Press: Govt limits overseas Qantas share

Transport minister and deputy prime minister Mark Vaile said the Australian government will make sure that the current ownership structure of Qantas Airways Ltd which limits foreign interest in the flag carrier to 49 percent remains in place.

‘In discussions that I’ve had with senior management from the company, they’ve given me a clear undertaking that they intend to maintain the share register in such a way that it remains compliant with the Qantas Sales Act,’ Vaile told the Ten Network television on Sunday.

His comments follow a failed 11 bln aud takeover offer for Qantas by a consortium led by Macquarie Bank Ltd that was withdrawn last week.

Though the consortium promised to adhere to the foreign ownership limit, buying by hedge funds may have breached the 49 pct limit during the takeover process.

‘As the smoke clears after the bid and the activity that has taken place on the share market, it will take a short time to ascertain the structure of the register,’ Vaile said.