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Miss Tonga eyes better tourism for the region


MISS Tonga’s Rosemarie Louise Fili is in full support of developing the tourism industry in the region if she wins the 2013 crown.

“Tourism industry in the Pacific region is like a passport to peace,” she said.

“Peace is something everybody needs and the Pacific region is no exception to coincide with the beauty of the islands and its kind people.

via Miss Tonga eyes better tourism for the region.

Tongan community supports NZ’s stand on MA-60 aircraft


The New Zealand government has suspended millions of dollars in tourism aid to Tonga and warned travellers of safety concerns over the plane which is flying for Real Tonga airline.

via Tongan community supports NZ’s stand on MA-60 aircraft | Pacific Beat | ABC Radio Australia.

Questions over Tonga air safety hurts tourist industry


Real Tonga’s MA-60 aircraft was a gift from the Chinese Government to Tonga… but it’s chequered safety record has caused alarm in Auckland.

The planes aren’t registered to fly by any Western government and New Zealand has put millions of dollars in tourism aid funding on hold until it’s satisfied the aircraft is safe.

via Questions over Tonga air safety hurts tourist industry | Pacific Beat | ABC Radio Australia.

Samoan pilot to validate controversial Tongan plane


A Samoan pilot is among a team of experts to be part of the validation process of the controversial MA-60 aircraft gifted by China to Tonga, reports Talamua Online.

Concerns about the safety of the aircraft A Chinese aircraft gifted to Tonga triggered the New Zealand government to suspend tourism aid of more than US$8 until the MA-60 aircraft’s safety was certified to an international standard.

via Samoan pilot to validate controversial Tongan plane – Samoa – News – Islands Business magazine.

NZ accused of ‘bullying’ Tonga over plane


Tonga’s government is trying to get international safety certification for its controversial new aircraft despite flying it commercially for more than a week.

Tonga was gifted a MA-60 for its Real Tonga airline to use for domestic flights by China but the plane has a checkered history with one of the world’s worst safety records.

via NZ accused of ‘bullying’ Tonga over plane – Travel News | TVNZ.

Tonga’s Chinese Aircraft Flying Despite Warnings…


A Chinese aircraft given to Tonga has begun commercial service with full loads despite New Zealand warnings about the risks.

The new 60-seat Xian MA60 turbo-prop aircraft was earlier this year given to Tonga, forcing the New Zealand-owned Chatham Pacific Airline, which with five aircraft was the only domestic carrier in the kingdom, out of Tonga.

via Tonga’s Chinese Aircraft Flying Despite Warnings… | Stuff.co.nz.

New Zealand warns of Tongan aviation risk


The Chinese-made MA-60 “has been the subject of serious concerns amongst aviation experts”, New Zealand’s foreign minister, Murray McCully, said.

The aircraft has been involved in numerous accidents, including three in recent months – two in Myanmar and one in Indonesia.

via New Zealand warns of Tongan aviation risk | News.com.au.

Tensions rise over Tonga plane


Tension is rising between New Zealand and Tonga, as the Kingdom continues to insist that it will fly a Chinese-gifted aircraft without international safety certification.

Earlier this week, it was revealed that New Zealand was suspending Tonga’s tourism aid because of the MA60 aircraft’s shocking safety record.

via Tensions rise over Tonga plane – Travel News | TVNZ.

Tonga loses NZ aid over use of suspect Chinese aircraft


Over the past weekend, Tonga was gifted a Chinese-made Xian MA60 for its domestic Real Tonga airline by China.

But it is an aircraft with one of the world’s worst safety records, as New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully pointed out to TVNZ.

via Tonga loses NZ aid over use of suspect Chinese aircraft – Australia Network News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation).

Safety warning over Tonga’s new domestic aircraft


The Government has suspended millions of dollars in tourism aid to Tonga after learning the kingdom wants to use an unsafe plane.

Tonga has been gifted a MA60 for its Real Tonga airline to use for domestic flights by China. The plane has one of the world’s worst safety records.

Since 2009 there have been 11 serious incidents involving MA60s, three of them in the last two months.

via Safety warning over Tonga’s new domestic aircraft – World News | TVNZ.