2 May 2016

New Zealand and New Caledonia firm up air links

11:18 am on 2 May 2016
Simon Bridges during caucus run 1.03.16

Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

New Zealand and New Caledonia have formalised a new air services agreement which had been negotiated last year, clearing the way for additional services.

New Zealand's transport minister, Simon Bridges, said this happened during today's visit to Auckland by New Caledonia's president, Philippe Germain.

Mr Bridges said the agreement would also make the process easier for New Zealand airlines to fly from New Caledonia to other international destinations in future.

He described the two countries are close Pacific neighbours, with nearly 30,000 passengers travelling between them each year.

Mr Germain is visiting New Zealand with the French prime minister, Manuel Valls, who had been in Noumea to discuss the territory's decolonisation process leading up to a 2018 referendum on independence.

Tontouta airport in New Caledonia

Tontouta airport in New Caledonia Photo: AFP