LAN CHILE PLANS TO END FLIGHTS TO PAPE‘ETE

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PAPE‘ETE, Tahiti, French Polynesia (April 4, 2002 – Tahitipresse)---The Chilean airline Lan Chile plans to stop flying to Tahiti by July, Minister for Tourism Nicole Bouteau has announced.

A code-share agreement was signed in March between Lan Chile and Australia’s Qantas and the Chilean airline now intends to fly from Santiago (Chile) to Auckland (New Zealand) and Sydney (Australia) without any stops in Tahiti.

"Lan Chile representatives complain about the cost of a stop-over in Tahiti," said Ms. Bouteau.

She added that she met earlier this year with Lan Chile representatives, in Chile, and discussed the issue.

"We do not want Lan Chile to stop coming to Tahiti. The crisis in Argentina affects the airline, but we know that in the future South America could be an important market for us," said Ms. Bouteau.

Lan Chile currently has two weekly flights from Chile to Tahiti, via Easter Island (Rapa Nui).

For additional reports from Tahiti Press, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Other News Sources: Agence Tahitienne de Presse.

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