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Air deal gets worse for NZ

Air deal gets worse for NZ

The National Party's repeating its opposition to the proposed Air New Zealand Qantas merger after the release of figures that show the downside for New Zealand is worse than all predictions.

"It's confirmed our view that the travelling public of New Zealand would be short-changed in any proposed amalgamation," says National Party Transport spokesman Roger Sowry.

"Given that the Government chose to get involved in Air NZ on the basis of 'national interest' it must now act in the 'national interest' and scrap the deal.

Revised calculations published today by the Commerce Commission in relation to the economic effects of the proposed deal shows the negative impact of the alliance has soared from minus $245 million to more than minus $500 million.

"It's yet more clear evidence that New Zealand is on the wrong end of a deal that could see control of our national airline handed over to the Australians," says Mr Sowry.

"It's also another nail in the coffin of a Labour Government that's bumbling its way through business deal after business deal.

"Last week we learned the long heralded restructuring of TVNZ was off because the Government failed to take note of Australian tax law," Mr Sowry says.

"Then just today Michael Cullen has admitted the cost of fixing Tranz Rail's tracks is already ballooning well past the $100 million that was first floated.

"All taxpayers need to take note of this series of blunders within the space of just a few days," Mr Sowry says.

"The Labour Government has again shown that it is lacking any business savvy as illustrated by its support for an Airline deal that could end up costing the country millions.

"It's also highlighted why the Government should not have interfered in an earlier proposal by Singapore Airlines to buy into Air New Zealand," says Mr Sowry.

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