Air New Zealand will not subsidise competitors flying Airbus A380 aircraft to Auckland International Airport Ltd.
Managing Director and Chief Executive Ralph Norris said today that he was extremely disappointed in comments made by a senior AIAL executive at a media and analyst briefing this morning.
The executive told the briefing that AIAL would be looking to recover costs associated with the A380 from all carriers, including Air New Zealand.
Mr Norris said he was surprised and dismayed by the comments.
“I’m in disbelief that the airport thinks that Air New Zealand should subsidise its competitors. To want to make us pay for facilities that we have no intention of using is nothing short of greed and is the behaviour of an unconstrained monopolist,” he said.
“I’ve heard also that AIAL thinks New Zealand deserves the right to have the A380. If the management and Board of AIAL think this, then they should be willing to subsidise the investment through lower returns to shareholders, while the demand for this aircraft reaches economic levels.”
Mr Norris also noted the large increase in AIAL’s profit on the back of increased traffic through investments made by airlines.
“It is disappointing to hear that AIAL is contemplating a large capital return while in past years the facilities, particularly at Christmas time, have been severely congested.
“The issues of Air New Zealand subsidising competitors, congested terminals and record profits highlight the need for a proper regulatory environment. We are hopeful the review of the Airport Authorities Act will address these matters.”
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