Australia’s Regional Express (Rex) will cease operating into the city of Parkes in response to the local government’s decision to hike passenger taxes by 15 percent. Within days of the September 4 announcement, Parkes Shire Council offered further talks about the taxes, but Rex’s board has declined to reconsider its decision, arguing that it has already had two rounds of negotiations with the local politicians.
While industry groups in the U.S. warn about the effects of rising regulatory costs on service levels at small regional airports, similar pressures have thrown Australia into an even more serious crisis, judging by the frantic warning calls emanating from the Regional Aviation Association of Australia.
Saab Aircraft Leasing (Chalet C24-26) here on Monday announced that Australian regional airline Regional Express (Rex) has taken an additional Saab 340B on a four-year lease. Rex is also extending its existing lease contracts–two dozen Saab A340s–for another four years. The Sterling, Virginia-based company has inked 15 transactions since the beginning of the year.
According to Qwilton Biel, chairman of the helicopter division of the New Zealand Aviation Industry Association, “If you walk into our industry forum and talk about fractionals, the attendees will think you’re talking about math. It’s just not a concept that’s caught on in New Zealand. You can drive the whole country north to south in one day.”
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