2 Feb 2005

Niue premier delighted at Pacific Blue takeover

8:33 pm on 2 February 2005

The Premier of Niue, Young Vivian, says he is delighted at a deal that sees Pacific Blue take over the international services of Samoa's Polynesian Airlines.

The Samoan government, which owns the airline, brought in the Australian based cut price operator, after growing concerns about the costs it faced.

It will be known as Polynesian Blue, and Young Vivian says he has been assured that the once a week service connecting Niue with Auckland will not be affected.

Mr Vivian says he expects that there will eventually be additional flights.

"First of all I hear that the flights are going to be cheaper, there will be more people travelling on the planes and from that I can guess that there will be more people wanting to come to Niue and from that there will be another extra flight."

The New Zealand Aid agency, NZAID, provides a guarantee if the loadings are low on the Niue flight, but says it has never needed to make a payment.

It can't yet say if the arrangement will remain under Polynesian Blue.