Tourism New Zealand's Chief Executive, Kevin Bowler, said the organisation welcomes any agreement that results in increased capacity to New Zealand
from key visitor markets.
"The Auckland-Singapore route provides a vital connection into South East Asia, India and the wider Asia region, as well as extending on to Europe which supports our work to target visitors from these regions and grow their arrivals to New Zealand."
Charles Spillane, Auckland Airport's acting General Manager Aeronautical Commercial, says he supports the announcement from the Minister of Transport, the Hon Gerry Brownlee, as the new alliance will bring substantial capacity growth and improved connectivity.
"The alliance between Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines demonstrates the commitment that both airlines have to growing connections between Singapore and New Zealand and we congratulate them on this," says Mr Spillane.
Auckland Airport estimates that the total additional capacity arising from the alliance on the Auckland-Singapore route to be at least 100,000 seats in the first year. This is calculated on the basis of Air New Zealand taking over the existing five-flight per week service currently operated by Singapore Airlines on the Auckland-Singapore route and replacing it with a daily service, as well as Singapore Airlines deploying an Airbus A380 on its remaining daily service between Auckland and Singapore on a seasonal basis.
"Singapore is a critical hub airport, providing New Zealand with access to South East Asia and in particular key emerging markets such as India and Indonesia. This new alliance will help to support the impressive growth we have already seen from these markets," continues Mr Spillane.
"Passenger arrivals from Singapore to New Zealand have grown by 19 per cent in the past 12 months. Also in the past year, visitor arrivals from India have increased by 13 per cent and Indonesian arrivals have increased by 17 per cent. The total growth in passenger arrivals from South East Asia has likewise been strong, with an 18 per cent increase over the past 12 months."
Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development's Manager Tourism, Jason Hill, says the increased capacity on the network is often a catalyst to grow demand, and he welcomes today's announcement and looks forward to the growth in arrivals that this alliance will bring for Auckland.
"We see this new alliance between Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines as a great opportunity to grow our existing partnership with Auckland Airport and Tourism New Zealand to promote Auckland as a visitor destination and a major gateway to New Zealand", says Mr Hill.
The alliance will see Air New Zealand and Singapore Airlines coordinating operations on the Auckland-Singapore and Christchurch-Singapore services, delivering real benefits to New Zealand by improving our connectivity to the world.