New notices deposited as Air Tahiti strike deepens

12:17 pm on 21 May 2016
An Air Tahiti plane

A strike has affected Air Tahiti for nearly two weeks now. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Three new strike notices have been deposited in French Polynesia as a strike at the territory's domestic airline, Air Tahiti, enters its second week.

The notices apply to companies that work with the airline; SOMSTAT, which refuels aircraft; Air Archipels, a subsidiary of Air Tahiti, and Newrest Polynésie, which supplies in-flight meals.

The strike at these companies is due to come into effect on Wednesday if the airline strike is not settled.

The airline has chartered a ferry to transport passengers from Huahine to Raiatea because they have been stuck since Tuesday.

Some flights to the Tuamotu islands have been maintained for today, although with rescheduled departure times.

Flights to the Marquesas and Austral Islands, as well as some other destinations, have been cancelled.

Yesterday, the president, Edouard Fritch, appealed to the parties concerned to settle their dispute because of the strike's impact on the territory, including the tourism industry.

The Air Tahiti strike was triggered over possible job losses in response to a sharp drop in domestic air travel.

Pilots have also told the local daily newspaper that pressure has increased with them having to pass aptitude tests twice a year.

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