Partnership cuts cost

National, Normal

The National, Wednesday October 16th, 2013

 THE East New Britain provincial government will subsidise operational costs for all Air Niugini flights to Tokua Airport, including direct flights to and from Cairns.

Airline chief executive Simon Foo revealed that when he met with members of the provincial Chamber of Commerce and Industry this week.

Foo said this was a follow-up meeting after a first meeting was held with the provincial government and the chamber.

“Air Niugini has a very good relationship with the provincial government, which has always supported initiatives by Air Niugini to operate flights internationally and make Tokua into an international gateway,” he said.

He said they had met with Deputy Prime Minister Leo Dion two weeks ago where the undertaking for the subsidy was given.

“We see this package as a tourist and travel development fund that the provincial government and East New Britain Chamber of Commerce and Industry can use to help us promote the route and Air Niugini has to carry part of the risk to put these flights into a reality,” the airline chief executive said.

He said the national airline was looking forward to going into partnership with its stakeholders in East New Britain to provide services affordable to the “small people” and the business community.

Foo said people in the New Guinea Islands should be encouraged to visit Cairns, which had a large Pacific communities.