Mar 04, 2021 Last Updated 5:10 AM, Mar 4, 2021

Pacific island countries should not expect international travel to resume in earnest until late 2021, travel and aviation experts have warned.

‘You should forget the US market for 2021, as well as Europe and the United Kingdom,” Peter Harbison told a recent meeting of Pacific airline executives.

“Nearly 550,000 Americans are projected to have died by 1 April 2021 (from COVID-19), which is more than double the mid-November 2020 level.

“The vaccine rollout is projected to have little impact by April 2021.

“For Europe, over a million Europeans are projected to die by 1 April 2021, representing a trebling of mid-November 2020 numbers.

“For the United Kingdom, nearly 120,000 residents are projected to die by April 2021, doubling its mid-November 2020 level.”

Harbison is the chairman emeritus of CAPA – Centre for Aviation, an Australian based aviation and travel market intelligence firm.

He was among a number of experts invited to address a virtual seminar for members of ASPA – the Association of South Pacific Airlines recently.

With the exception of Fiji Airways, all Pacific airlines, including Air New Zealand and QANTAS, are Association members.

Even the performance in 2021 of the region’s largest tourist source market, Australia, is in doubt, Harbison told the ASPA seminar.

For the full story, login to your account or subscribe today.

I survived the PX073 crash

Once aboard, my seat, 24F on the right side of the rear of the plane was comfortable and the flight attendants were courteous and pleasant. The safety briefing was pretty much like every safety briefing I’ve ever heard with one variance from my experience. Instead of instructing passengers on how to use the exit doors, the briefing said that a crew member would open the doors in the event of an emergency. I thought that was odd at the time but didn’t think much more of it.

When one of the cockpit crew members made the announcement that we were beginning our descent into Chuuk, the flight attendants immediately had the passengers open their window shades, fasten seatbelts and put seats in the upright position. It seemed quite a bit early as there was still 25 minutes left in the flight at that point but it took nothing to comply. As the Chuuk lagoon islands began to appear among aqua sea set against blue sky and white fluffy clouds, I began to search the lagoon for white caps.

The evening before my flight a friend posted a weather report for Chuuk on Facebook that indicated a low pressure system with possible cyclonic activity so I was vigilant. It carried a travel advisory for boaters. I don’t know what I thought I’d do if I saw white caps but the lagoon was calm so I relaxed into the descent. As we approached the runway, ominous grey clouds appeared and I watched the vapor trails coming off of the wing. I could clearly see the lagoon islands in the distance and spotted the Truk Stop dock as we continued to descend, and descend and descend. I had just thought that we were much lower over the water than on any of my many previous landings in Chuuk when the left wing dipped a little bit as, in my experience sometimes happens as pilots adjust to cross winds on approach to the runway. kharkov.natashaescort.com

Suddenly there was impact, an extremely hard impact, and an amazingly quick stop. My first thought was that we

.....to read more buy your personal copy at

Airports upgrade for PNG

Project opens up tourism possibiities

PAPUA New Guinea has embarked on an ambitious project to upgrade rural airports in an effort to develop the tourism industry and allow easier access for investors. This will include the construction of international airports at Mount Hagen in the highlands and Lae on the coast.

A new terminal building at Goroka Airport in the Eastern Highlands is nearing completion and with its associated runway improvements will be able to accommodate larger aircraft. International flights will also be possible from Goroka once the US$25million improvement project is completed by Chinese contractor, COVEC. National Airports Corporation, Chief Executive Officer, Richard Yopo, said NAC was committed to improving airport infrastructure throughout the country.

“The project will be funded by the Asian Development Bank and will see the upgrading of the aircraft pavement, a new terminal building and associated works,” he said. COVEC was awarded the contract despite a court action in which it was found guilty of illegally extracting road-building material owned by local landowners...

.....to read more buy your personal copy at

Dreams in the air

Carriers review fleets

TWO of the Pacific’s major carriers have started a review of their fleets which could see the Boeing 787 Dreamliner winging across regional skies in the near future. Fiji Airways is expected to take delivery of the next generation Boeing 737 Max8 early next year to replace the current 737-800s and 737-700 aircraft. Last month, one of the airline’s older Boeing 737s suffered a pressurisation fault between Christmas Island and Honolulu, forcing the crew to make a rapid descent to 10,000 feet and maintain that altitude until the end of the flight.

While Fiji Airways has an impeccable safety record, the incident did highlight the age of its Boeing 737 fleet, the backbone of its regional and short-haul service using narrow-body aircraft. On longer flights Fiji’s national carrier uses three Airbus A330 aircraft which have been unable to meet the huge demand for freight on long-haul services into Hong Kong, Singapore and the West Coast of the United States. “Fiji Airways’ inability to carry too much freight out of its Nadi hub has opened the door to Air New Zealand which operates the Boeing 777 with huge cargo capacity through Nadi to Los Angeles,” an airline insider told Islands Business.

.....to read more buy your personal copy at

 

CORSIA maps the future

THE aviation sector has a strong track record for climate action. Historically, efficiency improvements in the aviation sector outperform the wider economy: since 1990, aviation efficiency has improved at almost twice the rate of the wider economy.

Taking a longer-term view, CO2 emissions efficiency per seat improved by 80 per cent since the 1950s In 2009, the aviation industry adopted a climate strategy. The sector’s strategy to tackle the climate challenge consists of 3 global goals and 4 pillars of climate action.

The three industry goals are:

1. Pre-2020 ambition: 1.5 per cent annual average fuel efficiency improvement from 2009 to 2020;

2. In line with the next UNFCCC commitment period, stabilise net aviation CO2 emissions at 2020 levels with carbon neutral growth;

3. On the 2°C pathway: reduce aviation’s net CO2 emissions to 50 per cent of what they were in 2005, by 2050.

The 4 pillars of climate action that will make it possible to achieve these goals are:

1. Technology, including sustainable alternative fuels

2. Operations

3. Infrastructure

4. A global market-based measure: CORSIA

The first 3 pillars are intended to achieve emissions reductions in the aviation sector thereby bringing it closer to achieving the three goals. The fourth pillar – a marketbased measure...

.....to read more buy your personal copy at

Our Team

   Managing Editor

   Samantha Magick 

   Managing Director / Publisher

   Samisoni Pareti

   Marketing and Sales

   Waisale Rokotuiveikau

   Finance and Operations manager

   Sara Winnie Vafo'ou

   Design

   Dick Lee

Feb 21 cover

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.