Tasmania’s government has revealed an $11 million deal to secure Qantas call centre jobs for the state.
Most of an $11 million deal that secured the Qantas call centre for Tasmania will be in the form of payroll tax relief.
The Tasmanian government has revealed the details of its agreement with the airline, which resulted in 450 jobs being relocated from Victoria and Queensland.
The decision infuriated members of Victoria’s government who accused their federal counterparts of playing favourites with Tasmania.
Premier Will Hodgman says the majority of his government’s 10-year deal will be the waiving of tax the state would otherwise not have received.
“This means that the real cost to the Tasmanian taxpayers of saving these jobs is a lot lower than the headline figure,” Mr Hodgman said in a statement.
Part of the money will be spent on upgrading Qantas’s Hobart call centre and helping interstate employees to relocate.
But the state government is refusing to say how the $11 million will be broken down.
Qantas said the offer was only one factor in its decision to base the operation in Hobart.
“The Tasmanian government made an offer of predominantly payroll tax exemptions,” a Qantas spokeswoman said.
“This was a factor in our decision making, but was not the deciding factor.
“Hobart was also chosen because of its modern facilities, extra space and the ongoing costs of operating there.”
The closure of the mainland centres by mid-2016 will result in 250 positions being lost in Melbourne and another 200 in Brisbane.
Victorian planning minister Matthew Guy said the federal government had helped Tasmania poach the jobs, while Premier Denis Napthine said the island state was being considered a “special case”.
The federal and Tasmanian governments have both said no Commonwealth funding was involved.