21 Dec 2009

AIA says security levies must be dropped

10:00 pm on 21 December 2009

Commercial airlines say security charges for air travellers should be reduced as soon as possible.

After a review of its charges the state-owned Aviation Security Service (AVSEC) has found it set the levies too high because it underestimated the number of passengers during the recession.

Irene King, who heads the Aviation Industry Association, says AVSEC over-charged by about $30 million.

Ms King says dropping the levies will bring more tourists into the country, and create more wealth for New Zealanders.

She says the security service's financial modelling needs to be reviewed.

The Transport Minister's office says AVSEC is aware its cash reserves are too high and will go about reducing the surplus.