22 Jan 2015

Tongan businesses concerned over Air NZ plans

6:41 am on 22 January 2015

A Tongan businesswoman says she is concerned over Air New Zealand's plans to phase out the Boeing 767 planes on the Tonga to New Zealand route.

Air New Zealand currently operates one Boeing 767-300 service and four to five A320 services to Tonga each week, but has plans to remove the 767 from its fleet.

The Managing Director of Kool Fresh, Tricia Emberson, who says she has had a very good 25-year relationship with the carrier, says her fishery business could be ruined without the cargo space provided by the 767.

"Primarily we export out of Tonga through New Zealand to the States, and we also import from New Zealand into Tonga, so if there is no 767 it really does hurt our business significantly. We would probably have to look at another option, and whether we would just cease our business completely."

Tricia Emberson.

Air New Zealand says it can't confirm which aircraft will replace the 767 on the Tonga-Auckland route.