MICRONESIAN SURVEY INTO NEED FOR SUB-REGIONAL AIRLINE

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MAJURO, Marshall Islands (February 7, 1999 - PACNEWS/Radio Australia)---The general manager of Air Marshall Islands, Mark Mackay, says a survey is being undertaken of Micronesia's air service needs to establish whether there is support for the establishment of a sub-regional airline.

He said the survey will be completed by the end of February.

Speaking after attending a meeting of aviation officials in Nauru, he said there was agreement that the sub-region has the worst air service of any area within the South Pacific Forum.

Mackay said the two-day meeting last week produced a high degree of co-operation among transportation and airline representatives from the Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Nauru and the Marshall Islands.

In contrast to the larger islands in the South Pacific, Mackay said the Micronesian area suffers from the lack of a major tourist base that would help develop increased air service.

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