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United Future Opposes Qantas Air NZ shareholding

United Future continues opposition to Qantas Air NZ shareholding

United Future New Zealand today reiterated its strong opposition to Qantas taking a shareholding in Air New Zealand.

Responding to media reports that an announcement is imminent, the party’s finance spokesman, Gordon Copeland, said, “We believe that, before entertaining a 25 percent shareholding sale to Qantas, Air New Zealand should first look to the debt and equity markets for new funding.

“Qantas has been an aggressive competitor of Air NZ’s for 60 years and we remain concerned that collusion between the two airlines will be to the long term detriment of New Zealand.

“Air NZ is a cornerstone to our burgeoning tourism market and to the interests of New Zealand exporters. We would be crazy to hand such a large stake to an Australian-based competitor before first exploring the other options available to us.

“The problem is we don’t even know whether Air NZ has considered the market placement option or the advice that they have received in that regard.

“In any event, a part-sale to Qantas should be regarded very much as a fall-back option and pursued only as the last resort. The interests of New Zealand must always come first and I believe Air NZ should leave no stone unturned in its efforts to remain independent of Qantas long term,” said Mr Copeland.

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