Air NZ: No crisis

6 September 2001

WELLINGTON - Air New Zealand has hosed down speculation that Singapore Airlines may reconsider its push to take a greater stake in the Kiwi carrier.

Reports are suggesting the extent of losses due to be announced by Air NZ-owned Ansett Australia is forcing a rethink in Singapore.

Air New Zealand chairman Jim Farmer said the board has had no indication from Singapore Airlines that it had changed its position in relation to seeking additional equity in the company up to a level of 49 percent.

Farmer said Air NZ board meetings this week "are not in any sense crisis meetings but are an active response by directors to ensure that Air NZ strategy remains appropriate as circumstances change."

He said the board was highly conscious of the need to establish certainty for the market and that a clear path must be reached.

Farmer added the inability to reach agreement involving an acquisition of Virgin Blue was disappointing but simply meant the board was now placing greater focus on other strategies

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