Manufacturers had been eagerly awaiting Air NZ’s decision on a replacement for its fleet of Boeing 777-200.
Airbus, with its new A350, had all been but ruled out by industry observers last week because of the cost and complexity of introducing another wide-bodied jet to a small fleet.
The choice therefore was between the new Boeing 777-900 and a later model of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, the Dash 10.
Air NZ today confirmed the decision to purchase eight Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner aircraft powered by GE Aviation’s GEnx-1B engines.
At today’s list prices, the agreement represents a value of US $2.7 billion. Continue reading “Air NZ fleet replacement: good news for Boeing as Dash 10 is favoured”
Catching up on our ministerial press statements after the Christmas break, we noted a small glitch – which was quickly corrected – in something from Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter’s office.
The corrected version said the official holiday period had ended with nine people tragically killed in crashes on New Zealand roads.
This was three people fewer than the 12 who died in the previous holiday season.
The original version of the statement had said nine was two people fewer than the 12 who died last holiday season. Continue reading “Getting the numbers right in Genter’s drive (long-distance) to zero road deaths”
Significant questions are being raised about the economic efficiency and competitiveness of the port sector.
Reports this week of the Commerce Commission receiving complaints about anti-competitive conduct by NZ port companies follow the Office of the Auditor-General writing to port company chairs and CEOs to raise a raft of issues identified in its annual audit of the sector.
The OAG had found considerable variation in port companies’ approach to valuations.
Others involved in the industry are convinced many ports are making uneconomic investment decisions, some companies earning less than 2% return on equity. They back the OAG who advised port companies to use fair value, based on expected cash flows to be generated.
The complaints to the Commerce Commission have spurred it to start a preliminary assessment of the conduct that is being questioned but it hasn’t embarked on a formal investigation. The report said a number of these complaints raised potential issues about various ports taking advantage of their market power in markets for the supply of services.
The national port network is also under review from legislators with the upper North Island supply chain study underpinning the government’s desire to integrate port, rail and road transport infrastructure.
Continue reading “Economic health of NZ’s port sector is being brought into question”
Point of Order was lamenting in an earlier post how the taxpayer has to suck up the $35m cost of the of the Ardern-Peters government’s decision to retain electric locos, soon to be refurbished, on the Main Trunk Line between Hamilton and Palmerston North.
This in effect was a reversal of the decision taken two years ago to ditch the North Island electric locos and replace them with diesel-powered engines.
What Point of Order failed to mention in that earlier post is that the latest batch of KiwiRail’s new DL class diesel-electric locomotives has arrived at the Port of Tauranga. Continue reading “We await KiwiRail’s explaining the benefits of two systems on the Main Trunk Line…”
The poor old taxpayer who poured more than $1bn into state-owned KiwiRail during the term of the National government is being hit up for another $35m to reverse the decision taken two years ago to ditch the North Island electric locos and replace them with diesel-powered engines.
The Ardern-Peters-led coalition has decided to refurbish the 15 units in the electric fleet — even though the argument to replace them was “compelling” .
While the government now says it is keeping electric locomotives on the North Island Main Trunk Line running to help meet its long-term emissions goals and boost the economy, KiwiRail earlier said it was essentially running “a railway within a railway” by having the electric section. (The North Island Main Trunk runs from Auckland to Wellington but is electrified only between Hamilton and Palmerston North). The doubling up of service facilities, inventory, training and maintenance required with two separate systems on the line, KiwiRail said, adds to inefficiencies and unreliability.
The $35m now earmarked for refurbishment of the trains and electric control system is additional to the $4bn for public transport and rail under the National Land Transport Programme. Continue reading “More public money shovelled into the KiwiRail firebox to help the environment”