Offering A Helping Hand To Struggling Regional Airports
New Zealand First is questioning why the government has allowed small regional airports to face a funding crisis, says New Zealand First Leader and Member of Parliament for Northland Rt Hon Winston Peters.
“New Zealand First is calling for a stop to the ‘survival of the fittest’ dogma where regional airports either operate successfully or go under,” Mr Peters told a public meeting in Gisborne today.
“New Zealand First will provide much-needed funding for regional airports owned by local authorities to help pay for infrastructure improvements and to meet safety and amenity standards.
“We can’t reasonably expect small airports around the country to meet these huge costs. Unlike big airports they don’t have large revenues to help pay for the things they need.
“Like the US, every OECD country subsidises regional airports and air services. New Zealand is the only exception.
“There is a place for subsidising regional airports. They are crucial for communications and development.”
Note; Regional airports at risk are: Kaitaia, Kerikeri, Whangarei, Whakatane, Taupo, Gisborne, Whanganui, Masterton, Westport, Hokitika, Timaru, and Chatham Islands.