21 Jul 2009

American Samoa holds talks with Fiji's Air Pacific

11:04 am on 21 July 2009

American Samoa has held discussions with Fiji based Air Pacific to provide service between Pago Pago and Honolulu.

However, the territory's governor Togiola Tulafono says the recent discussions provided no positive results because of U.S. aviation laws that bars foreign airlines from operating between U.S. airports.

Togiola made the revelation on his weekend radio program, responding to a caller wanting to know as to the chances of getting Air Pacific to stop in Pago Pago, now that the airline will soon be flying between Apia, Samoa and Honolulu.

Foreign carriers are barred from operating passenger service between any two U.S. airports under federal cabotage law, unless a waiver is granted by the federal government.

Togiola says he has tried to have the federal government waive the cabotage law for American Samoa but was met with continued oppositions from major U.S. carriers, such as Hawaiian Airlines, United Airlines and Delta Airways.

He said his administration will continue to push for a waiver despite the objections.