14 Sep 2011

Air Kiribati loses US$100,000 due to Fiji government's sudden flight restrictions

7:08 pm on 14 September 2011

The sudden suspension of Air Kiribati flights between Fiji and Kiribati has cost the airline almost 100,000 US dollars so far.

The Fiji government suspended Air Kiribati flights between Nadi and Tarawa last Wednesday, without explanation.

The spokesperson for Air Kiribati, Itibwebwe Kabiriera, is yet to hear the outcome of yesterday's bilateral meeting between officials of the two countries in Suva regarding the suspension.

Mr Kabiriera says the ordeal is costing Air Kiribati up to 36,000 US dollars per suspended flight, and says it has damaged the company's reputation.

"It is affecting us greatly financially. Actually we are still pulling up our reputation and getting people back to using our airline, and it's all ruined again. But I hope that the people of Kiribati and the travelling public understand that it is not us that failed to deliver what we are promising them but it is the government of Fiji that is causing all this."

Air Pacific continues to run flights between Tarawa and Nadi on Wednesdays and Thursdays.