He said the services were in operation through the “subsidising” of other profitable ports and their passengers.
“We service no less than 25 domestic destinations. And I have to say that a significant number, more than half, or our domestic services are not profitable,” he said. That means the profitable ports, Rabaul included, and their passengers are effectively subsidising the unprofitable services.
“This does not mean that the fares to and from Rabaul are higher by comparison to Popondetta, Daru, Wapenamanda. No.
“The difference lies in the volume, number of passengers who fly these routes which are much lower than Rabaul loads.” Sir Frederick said flights to East New Britain and ports in the Niugini Islands were set to increase.
“Air Niugini currently operates 40 flights a week between Rabaul and Port Moresby, Kavieng, Buka, Kieta and Lihir. This will rise to 48 flights from December when we reintroduce direct flights to Hoskins and Lae with the Fokker 70 jet aircraft,” he said.