ITOC Opposes Extra Airport Security Measures

Published: Fri 20 Feb 2009 02:36 PM
News Release:
20 February 2009
Travel And Tourism Organisations Oppose Extra Airport Security Measures
The Inbound Tour Operators Council (ITOC) and the Travel Agents’ Association of NZ (TANZ) are opposed to plans to increase air security at our domestic airports.
This follows the release of a Government review from last year that was this week made available under an Official Information Act request.
Paul Yeo, chief executive of ITOC and TAANZ said: “While we broadly support airport security measures this is taking things to an unwelcome extreme. It can only add costs that are disproportionate to the intended outcome and will likely inhibit travel especially to smaller provincial airports.”
Mr Yeo said the report appeared to have been buried by the past government and suggested that the new government take the same approach.
“We’re very concerned about endless taxes and charges being added to air tickets, often with little justification,” said Mr Yeo.
“You can never fully protect every method of transportation against the actions of a disaffected few. I think we have the balance about right but this draws the line much lower at an arbitrary point that will bring intrusive and costly surveillance into airports as small as Wanaka and Kaitaia. It could be the breaking point in the viability of services to these centres. Where’s the difference between a 19 seat aircraft and a 45 seat tour coach or passenger train that might be next on the security agenda?”
“We fully support the views of Treasury and the Ministry of Tourism in opposing the recommendations in the report. Hopefully by the time Cabinet revisits this report they will see that the inconvenience and cost far outweigh any perceived safety benefits. ”

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