25 February 2007
On 20 February 2007 the Guardian reported that the Irish, who do not yet have an "open skies" agreement with the US, are getting impatient.
The Irish Times carried a Reuters story on the day the first round this year began on 6 February 2007.
New Zealand's air services arrangements with Ireland include the Shannon restrictions on trans-Atlantic services that limit non-stop flights to Dublin but also include an exchange of cabotage rights.
I was invited to speak but working on the Air New Zealand/Qantas Tasman Networks Agreement (TNA) application kept me back in New Zealand.
The Institute also publishes the very promising Aviation Law Prof Blog.
I also recall that while SFO now has a BART station, the Los Angeles politicians seem to have stopped their mass urban transit system, Metro Rail, short of LAX to appease the local parking lot and taxi industries!
The current bilateral arrangements between New Zealand and Canada permit the operation of up to four services per week by the airlines of each side.
Last Monday the Dominion Post carried a story speculating that YVR would be the new long-haul destination for Air New Zealand in 2007. The speculation has already begun in the forums on Airliners.net as to what will be the new long-haul destination for 2008.
Having visited Vancouver and Western Canada a couple of times on holiday I would throughly recommend it. It will also make a great stopover for travellers between New Zealand and the UK, with only one stop and avoiding the hassles of the US.
I have a great deal of respect for Fran's abilities as a journalist and still recall from my Treasury days the speed with which, in the annual Budget lock up for journalists, she would find the stories that the then governments were not so keen to have highlighted. This latest story, however, has one howling factual error. It refers to "Air Nadi" instead of Air Pacific.
Note that the government's share of Air New Zealand has recently fallen from around 82% to 76.75% following the conversion of convertable notes held by Qantas.
Needless to say, I and my Ministry of Transport colleagues are banned from holding shares in Air New Zealand.
18 February 2007
The 5th APEC Transportation Ministerial Meeting will be held in late March 2007 in Australia.
My longest cross-country flying effort was Wellington to Whangarei and back which took me just over three hours each way piloting a Piper Arrow (ZK-EIF).
And yes, James does have an interesting page of energy efficiency comparisons for passenger transport modes. Unfortunately it is information on modal comparisons for energy efficiency in freight transport that I am currently trying to track down.
As a consequence the excellent New Zealand Aviation Security Service will again be boosting its staff numbers. I spent around two years part time working on policy and related consultations on how to fund the Service and also passenger border processing activities in an exercise led by my former Treasury colleagues. Air travellers are fortunate in New Zealand that all hold-stow baggage screening for international flights is now efficiently and effectively done out of sight after you have handed your bags in at check-in. In addition, screening points in New Zealand are generally adequately staffed to avoid delays. This was not the case the last time I transited through LAX - a real hassle.
Finally an alternative libertarian view on the aviation security announcement from a former Ministry colleague who writes the Liberty Scott weblog. A cost/benefit analysis would indeed be interesting.
11 February 2007
What struck me in completing the new page is the amount of consolidation that has been going on in the international liner shipping industry in the recent past, something that some of the web pages of New Zealand port companies have yet to catch up with.
The additional maritime-related links now take the total number of links off my home pages to well over the thousand mark.
Now I have a good excuse to see if I can make time to take some more shipping and sea port photographs to add to the new page.
10 February 2007
Here are a few photos I took on different more recent visits to the main railway station in Geneva, Switzerland. The lighting conditions were sometimes less than ideal.
A modern electric Swiss Rail train with double-decked passenger carriages.
An older Swiss Rail electric engine pulling single-decked passenger carriages.
The RER operates local services as part of the Geneva public transport system.
A TGV that operates between Paris and Geneva is visible on the left of the photograph above.
On 26 October 2006 Air New Zealand announced that it would also be ceasing operations between Papeete and Los Angeles and will instead code share on Air Tahiti Nui services on this sector. At the same time Air New Zealand will be recommencing a non-stop Rarotonga-Los Angeles operation.
The article also reports on a ministerial commitment to renegotiate the 34-year old Malaysia-Singapore air services arrangements. Currently the number of Singaporean and Malaysian airlines that can fly between Singapore and KL is restricted, thereby excluding the new low-cost carriers. A separate article reports that these negotiations will start in March.
Malaysia is also planning to negotiate with Brunei.
New Zealand has "open skies" arrangements in place with Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei, the latter two through the MALIAT.
The web site also has a schematic map of UK post code areas.
08 February 2007
As well of being of relevance to negotiators, this study should be of considerable interests to academics and students working in the international air transport field.
06 February 2007
Here are couple of photographs I took last year out of aircraft windows while taxiing for take off.
The JAL B747-400F above was about to take off from Frankfurt as we took off for Geneva.
03 February 2007
On 11 January 2007 Air Pacific and Air New Zealand received US DoT approval of their application to codeshare on each other's Nadi (NAN) - Los Angeles (LAX) operations.
It really has been a cold, wet summer!
The Federation of Tour Operators (FTO) is reported in the Telegraph to be set to take legal action and the Conservatives are also questioning its legality. The BBC reported on the UK Government's response.