5 Jun 2017

Tongan PM says another domestic airline a must

8:41 am on 5 June 2017

The Prime Minister of Tonga says it must have another domestic airline to help reduce airfares.

The Tonga Broadcasting Commission reports the government is looking at initiatives to help reduce complaints over expensive domestic airfares to the outer-islands.

The Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva said there are only two options - first is setting up of another airline to compete in the market and the second is to set up its own airline to provide cheaper fares.

Tonga's Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva arrives at the Pacific Islands Forum in Port Moresby

'Akilisi Pohiva has brought up the idea of another airline in Tonga Photo: Koro Vaka'uta / RNZ

This comes after several complaints over expensive fares to Vava'u.

In a previous interview with the CEO of Real Tonga Airline Tevita Palu said the airfares are calculated according to the expenses of their operation.

It includes fuel costs and leasing of the aircraft to the government, salaries and wages of their staff, ongoing maintenance of the aircraft to ensure they are safe for the passengers and others.

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