Air Pacific plans (03-Jun-2013) to look at renewing and expanding its regional fleet after it completes the renewal of its widebody fleet in Nov-2013. Air Pacific CCO and acting CEO Aubrey Swift told CAPA on the sidelines of the IATA annual general meeting in Cape Town that the carrier plans to look at replacing the two ATR 42s and three de Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otters operated by regional subsidiary Pacific Sun. He says the carrier may opt for a ATR 42-600s and ATR 72-600s, with the 72-600s being used to replace 737s on thin low frequency short-haul routes. Air Pacific currently operates four 737NGs, two A330-200s and two 747-400s, according to CAPA’s Fleet Database. Mr Swift says the carrier, which is in the process of re-branding as Fiji Airways, will receive its third and final A330-200 in Nov-2013, completing the replacement of its 747 fleet.
IATA AGM 2013: Air Pacific to consider renewing regional fleet
You may also be interested in the following articles...
LIAT’s woes reflect business conflicts, limited vision, in intra-regional Caribbean aviation
For intra-Caribbean aviation the old adage “the more things change, the more things stay the same” rings true. Unfortunately, the regional airline LIAT is a perfect example of an airline whose financial and operational failures are the epitome of stagnation in a region where outdated government policies constantly squash innovation.
During the past year some of the shareholder governments of the perpetually troubled airline have attempted to initiate tough love for LIAT, including threatening to withhold funds until LIAT can improve its service and operations. In some ways those threats are a double-edged sword – given the challenges of doing business in the region, a business environment largely driven by years of governments propping up state-owned airlines instead of allowing free market forces to take effect.
Although LIAT's shareholder governments would like to see more competition, the reality is that the aviation business in the Caribbean remains in a state of inertia, and all of LIAT's pledges for improvement will likely not materialise until a true mindset change sweeps over the region.
South Pacific aviation markets will be defined by China’s expansion
The nature of the South Pacific's geography makes finding the right partners for its airlines essential for their survival in international long haul markets – as most are.
The region is characterised by relatively liberal access regimes and by partnerships of varying levels – in New Zealand especially, where Air New Zealand’s international network is dominated by JVs. Virgin Australia has built a ‘virtual alliance’ alongside HNA, Singapore Airlines, Etihad and Delta, with very little of its own metal flying outside Australia. At Qantas Group, international performance has improved markedly following its Emirates partnership, as its operating focus has shifted from Europe toward Asia and North America, with local JVs, and close partnerships with American Airlines and China Eastern continuing to grow and mature.
For all airlines in the region, the China market will define much of the growth over the coming decade. (This report is taken from the Jul/Aug-2016 issue of CAPA's Airline Leader)