LOCAL FIJI AIR FARES GO UP 15 PERCENT

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SUVA, Fiji Islands (January 2, 2000 - The Fiji Sun/PINA Nius Online)---Fiji domestic airfares went up Monday after Interim Civil Aviation Minister Jone Koroitamana ratified a 15 percent increase.

Air Fiji chief executive Ken MacDonald said the increase is due to:

- The doubling of aviation fuel costs since August 16 1999.

- The strengthening of the U.S. dollar, in which the industry did international business such as insurance.

- Poor airstrips on several outer islands accelerating wear and tear on aircraft.

- High costs of maintaining experienced and fully qualified technical staff and pilots.

- Servicing routes with a small traveling population.

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: http://www.pinanius.org 

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