Australia’s government has set aside A$50 million ($40 million) over 2015-16 to cover the costs of continuing the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
The Australian department of finance has disclosed the figure in its newly-released statement on 2015-16 budget measures, which also lists its contribution for 2014-15 at A$29.6 million.
This funding will be provided should the missing Boeing 777 not be located in the current search area, says the budget document.
Vessels covering the primary search zone off western Australia have yet to locate any trace of MH370 and the zone is set to be doubled in area to 120,000km2.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau will fund the country’s contribution from finances provided in the 2014-15 budget.
“The cost of this measure will be offset by financial contributions to the search from other countries,” says the new documentation. “The actual cost will depend on a number of factors, including the length of the search.”
MH370 disappeared while en route to Beijing on 8 March 2014.