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Solutions Sought For Canterbury Exporters

25 November 2001

“The loss of 767s flying out of Christchurch is creating enormous pressure for exporters and I have asked Industry New Zealand and the Ministry of Economic Development to work with producers and manufacturers to see what solutions there are,” said Economic Development Minister Jim Anderton today.

“I met with Canterbury producers and manufacturers late last week and clearly this is a major barrier to economic development, particularly at the beginning of the major fresh produce exporting season.

“The reasons for the cutback of flights by Air New Zealand are unfortunate but understandable. 737s are much cheaper to fly and the airline needs to reduce costs. These factors coincide with a global reduction in passenger numbers and airlines are facing cutbacks in services,” said Jim Anderton.

“Industry New Zealand and the Ministry of Economic Development are expected to come back to me with some suggestions within the next week or so,” said Jim Anderton.

Air New Zealand has agreed to three 767 flights to Auckland for the next three months as a temporary solution.

Ends

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