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Page: Travel Bug 10 - Early January 2006 Vanuatu travel news

The Travel Bug 10

Issue 10 - 5. January 2006

Japan, Solomon Islands Strengthen Ties via Airport Runway Project

The safety of both domestic and international air travelers in and out of Honiara has been drastically improved with the completion of the Honiara International Airport Restoration Project, which was officially handed over to the Solomon Islands government earlier this week. The airport restoration project is reported to have cost the Japanese government more than US$7 million since 2000. It included work on the restoration of the runway pavement and replacement of runway lights. A ceremony attended by the Prime Minster Allan Kemakeza, Solomon Islands Supervising Aviation Minister Alfred Sasako, and the Japanese Charge de'Affaires Katsuhiko Kubo was held at Honiara's international airport on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Allan Kemakeza said the completion of this project marks another milestone in the development cooperation and bilateral relations between Solomon Islands and Japan. The project is poised to improve Solomon Islands' tourism industry, the minister added. Kamekeza commended the high quality of work carried out by the Pacific Consultants International and Kitano Construction in planning, construction and successful completion of the Project.

Meanwhile, Japanese Charge de’Affaires in Solomon Islands, Katsuhiko Kubo, said the relationship between his country and Solomon Islands has grown over time and “it is with projects such as this that shows how committed the people of Japan are towards this friendship.” According to him, the Honiara International Airport was the first return of grant aid to the Solomon Islands since 2000. Supervising Minister for Civil Aviation Alfred Sasako, the airport restoration project will ensure safety and comfortable traveling for passengers. He thanked Kitano Construction Company on behalf of the government and its people “for a job well done.” The minister also said he is optimistic that the Japanese government will assist Solomon Islands construct a new control tower to replace the current dilapidated building. According to him, a team of experts from Japan will make an audit of the project in March next year to make sure deficiencies on the runway were rectified. Work on the project started in June this year. (Source: eTurbo News 16/12/2005)

Ozeania Reisen AG Update

Bruno & Ursula Boeckli, present owners and founders of Ozeania Reisen AG, have released the official statement today that Clare Walker, long-standing member of the Management has acquired the majority of the shares of Ozeania Reisen AG in Management Buy-Out. Take over commences 01st January 2006. The specialist for customised travel to Australia, New Zealand, and the Islands of the South Pacific as well as Language Study Travel has been successfully operating with a staff of 17 for the last 16 years in Fislisbach near Baden, Switzerland.

With this long planned Management Buy-Out Ozeania Reisen AG is securing optimal continuity of the successful company. Minority share holders are Yolanda Herzog (Manager Retail since the founding of Ozeania Reisen AG), Ursula Erne (Teamleader), and Hanny Geiser (Advertising/Marketing). Young and dynamic: Founder and Switzerland’s Down Under pioneer Bruno Boeckli stated “This internal take-over will ensure current and future clients of Ozeania Reisen AG stability, reliability, know-how, and a young and dynamic approach for Ozeania’s future ” (Source: Ozeania Reisen AG Press Release 22/12/2005)

Pacific Blue Wings On

With just over a year since beginning its operations in Fiji, Pacific Blue's capacity for its Fiji routes has doubled. In a PACNEWS report, Virgin Blue's Head of Commercial- International, Karam Chand said that that Pacific Blue, has doubled its capacity to and from Fiji in just over a year of operations. "Pacific Blue has had a remarkable impact on the Fiji tourism industry," Mr Chand said. PACNEWS reported that following the entry of Pacific Blue, the Brisbane - Nadi market has grown by 58 percent and Melbourne - Nadi by 39 percent. "The largest market segment, Sydney - Nadi, has grown by 16 percent since Pacific Blue entered the market only three months ago." "The release of the results came as Pacific Blue announced the appointment of Air Fiji as its General Sales Agent in Fiji," Mr Chand said in the report.

"We're extremely pleased that Air Fiji has agreed to work with us as our General Sales Agent in Fiji". "Fiji is one of our most important international markets and we are pleased to be able to expand our commitment to this market through our association with such a high profile partner" The report stated that Air Fiji CEO, Sialeni Vuetaki welcomed the new arrangements. "Air Fiji is very pleased to be associated with a world renowned airline," he said. "The opportunity to represent Pacific Blue in Fiji has come at a time when Air Fiji has begun spreading its services to the Pacific region". Mr Chand said that with Air Fiji offices located all over Fiji, they would be able to transport international visitors to Fiji behind the traditional gateway airports. (Source: Fiji Times 23/12/2005)

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