26 August 2007

Further anti-trust action against British Airways

A 26 August 2007 article in the Sunday Telegraph gives a detailed account of the further anti-trust difficulties that British Airways is now in, involving price fixing of both cargo and passenger fuel surcharges, the latter with Virgin Atlantic and other airlines.

Philippines looking to hold air services negotiations with New Zealand and Singapore

An August 2007 story in the Manila newspaper, the Business Mirror, reports that the Philippines is looking to hold air services negotiations with New Zealand and Singapore in the near future.

Pacific Blue to start domestic operations in New Zealand

On 23 August 2007 details were announced by Brett Godfrey of domestic services to be operated by New Zealand-based Virgin Blue subsidiary, Pacific Blue. The initial operations will be on the AKL-WLG-CHC triangle commencing on 15 November 2007 with further destinations to follow. The aircraft to be used is the 180-seat Boeing 737-800.

With the airline being Australian-owned, this is a rare example of a cabotage service.

Air New Zealand responded almost immediately by dropping some of its fare levels. Pacific Blue will also be competing against Qantas subsidiary, JetConnect, which trades under the Qantas brand name.

I attended the launch in Wellington.

05 August 2007

European paper on environment issues for ICAO Assembly

On 9 July 2007 the European Commission released a European working paper, "A comprehensive approach to managing aviation's environmental impacts," to be presented by Portugal at the triennial International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Assembly (see previous post).

The 36th session of the Assembly is to be held in Montreal from 18 to 28 September 2007.

Japan and South Korea liberalise air services arrangements

Reports on 3 August 2007 in Bloomberg, Chosun Ilbo, Japan Today and Channel Newsasia outline the contents of new air services arrangements reached between Japan and South Korea. The exchange negotiated over two days last week in Tokyo includes a limited exchange of fifth freedom rights. Restrictions remain on access to the two slot-constrained Tokyo airports, Narita and Haneda.

These are the first such more open arrangements negotiated by Japan and clearly represent the implementation of a major change in policy (see previous post).

V Australia

Virgin Blue International Airlines Pty Ltd now has a trading name. On 25 July 2007 Virgin Blue announced that the proposed new international airline will be called V Australia (see previous post).

Canada and Iceland conclude "open skies" air services agreement

On 18 July 2007 the Canadian Minister of Transport announced the conclusion of a new bilateral "open skies" agreement between Canada and Iceland.

New Zealand's current air services negotiation priorities

In a 20 July 2007 speech to the annual conference of the Aviation Industry Association of New Zealand (AIA), the Minister of Transport Safety, Hon Harry Duynhoven, outlined some of New Zealand's current priorities for air services negotiations. These include holding negotiations with Canada, the European Union, the Philippines and Turkey.