The Australian government has released for comment an aviation issues paper as the initial step in the development of the country's first national aviation policy.

Anthony Albanese, minister for infrastructure, transport, regional development and local government, says the government is committed to developing a comprehensive national aviation policy statement or white paper that will "provide greater planning and investment certainty for the industry, and provide clear commitments for users of aviation services and communities affected by aviation activity".

A national aviation policy "green paper" will be released for comment in the second half of this year, leading to the release of a detailed white paper in mid-2009.

The issues paper is the basis for consultation and engagement in the process and is intended to encourage industry and community participation. Submissions are called for by 27 June. It comprises five main themes - aviation industry, infrastructure, safety, security and community protection - with questions focusing on some of the major issues facing the industry, governments and stakeholders in meeting the challenges and future planning.