Air Tahiti

Air Tahiti gets subsidies extended until July

The transport minister Jean-Christophe Bouissou signed an agreement to give Air Tahiti just over $US4 million to keep flying to 34 islands earmarked for cuts.

The deal was extended as the aviation sector keeps being affected by the downturn in business because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

After a lockdown, Air Tahiti said last June it would drop more than half of its destinations and service just 20 islands.

The announcement angered the government, which said such a drop of service amounted to taking the population of the entire islands hostage.

Air Tahiti to sell six ATR 72-500s

The aircraft will be remarketed via UK lessor Falko Regional Aircraft as it re-equips with three ATR 42-600s and four ATR 72-600s that it has on order with the Toulouse-based manufacturer.

The six -500s were built between 2005-2009 and will be available from this quarter. They have been operated from new by the Pacific Ocean airline, whose route network covers 47 islands in French Polynesia.