Destinations

Urgent talks underway in Vanuatu over runway issues

Anne Majumdar

Vanuatu’s tourism industry is in urgent talks to resolve safety issues affecting the runwway at Port Vila’s Bauerfield International Airport as Virgin Australia confirmed it would also suspend services.

Vanuatu Tourism Office (VTO), industry and top level government officials are meeting urgently this morning to confirm funding and the timeline for the permanent repair of the runway.

Virgin Australia followed Air New Zealand in suspending flights with Qantas withdrawing its codeshare services on Air Vanuatu operations.

However, Air Vanuatu, Fiji Airways, Solomon Airways and Aircalin are continuing their scheduled international flights operating in and out of the airport.

Air Vanuatu continues to work closely with the Civil Aviation Authority of Vanuatu (CAAV) and Airports Vanuatu Limited (AVL) to attempt to resolve the issues facing the airport. Temporary measures include daily mechanical sweeping of the runway.

Vanuatu Tourism Office general manager Linda Kalpoi confirmed a high level government meeting will take place this morning in Port Vila to decide upon a more permanent solution.

“We’ll be working together to resolve this issue quickly and effectively,” she said.

“Finding the solution swiftly is of upmost importance to Vanuatu’s tourism industry and the country as a whole, and we will do everything we can to ensure suspended flights are resumed, whilst treating the safety of all travellers to Vanuatu as a paramount priority.”

Image credit: iStock

 

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