23 Jan 2006

Taiwan offers Nauru help to regain plane

4:27 pm on 23 January 2006

The Taiwanese Ambassador to Nauru, King Y Yu, says his country will provide financial assistance to help Air Nauru get its only passenger jet back from America's EXIM bank.

The Bank repossessed the aircraft just over a month ago after Nauru had gone several years without meeting debt repayments.

Air Nauru's 737 provides services to several central Pacific countries and the repossession left hundreds stranded around the region.

The airline has since used charter aircraft to meet some of its commitments.

Ambassador Yu says Nauru and the American creditors will meet next week and the aim is to get the aircraft back.

"And we don't think that the aircraft can be sold for very much money on the open market. The aircraft is very suitable - it is designed for flying to the ocean area, with an engine that is powerful. It is good for Nauru to get it back."

Ambassador Yu says the extent of the financial aid Taiwan needs to provide the airline will be not be known until after next week's meeting.