Flag carrier opens office

National, Normal

The National, Wednesday 19th of February, 2014

NATIONAL flag carrier Air Niugini will be resuming ticketing sales in Arawa, 25 years after the original office was closed following the Bougainville uprising.
Located in the Post PNG office, it was opened by State Enterprises Minister Ben Micah.
The airline’s commercial manager Dominic Kaumu said the move was to bring services closer to the people, especially those from Central and South Bougainville who spent a lot of money on sea and road travel to Buka to purchase tickets.
Speaking before the opening in Arawa, Kaumu said the initiative to have their office within the Post PNG office was in line with government moves to have all 16 state-owned enterprises work ing closely to lift productivity.

This is the first such arrangement between the two and Kaumu is hopeful similar arrangements will be made with other state-owned companies in centres around PNG.
Two ticketing officers will be based at the new office, with Air Niugini looking at the possibility of training Post PNG staff to take care of business for them as well.
“This is a cost-effective arrangement and will see that we pay rent back to a sister company and the government,” Kaumu said.
The opening of the Arawa branch comes 25 years after its former office had to be closed due to the armed conflict between Panguna landowners and operators of the Panguna copper mine.
With the airline’s introduction of e-ticketing, ticket purchase has been made easier although the only operational airport has been on Buka Island and most of the region’s population have had to travel long distances to catch their flights.
Davis announced that the Aropa Airport, near Arawa, would be re-opened within the next two weeks.
The re-opening was set for Monday this week but was postponed for unknown reasons.