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Article from BTNews 20 SEPTEMBER 2010

Tasman problems

VIRGIN BLUE’S planned alliance with Air New Zealand, turned down with a draft ruling by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, has resulted in Sir Richard Branson hinting on Australian radio that the airline might terminate all flights to New Zealand.  "If we can't have an arrangement like that, there is a possibility that we would pull off the Tasman routes," he said.  The airline withdrew from NZ domestic services due to losses.  Australia to New Zealand was also losing money.  “We think if we can work together with Air New Zealand, we can offer a proper competitor to Qantas," Branson noted.  "If we're a strong competitor, we can keep fares low and we can keep Qantas honest and we believe that's in the interest of the travelling public.” www.virginblue.com.au

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