Air transport, telecoms: the country claims to rejoice in the competition

“The battle between Onati and Pacific Mobile Telecom is a battle for the execution of a contract freely entered into by the parties”, stressed yesterday, Vice-President Jean-Christophe Bouissou, “saddened that politics are involved in it “. (©D.G.)

With the announced arrival of Christian Vernaudon’s Natireva company, under the name Air Moana, and the more modest one of Alexandre Mu’s Motu Link, inter-island air service will experience profound changes. Air Tahiti is already competing in the Leeward Islands by the Tahiti Air Charter company of the Degage group.

Vice-President Jean-Christophe Bouissou, in charge of air transport, raised this subject with the press yesterday in the presidency. With the ambition displayed, in this file as in that of mobile telephony, to defend government independence in a context of unrest on social networks.

“There is great interest from economic players and investors, to the delight of users and the country”, he assured alongside the director of the country’s aviation service, Georges Puchon. Which specified that a new request was filed on January 4 for a company called Air Bora Bora providing for the operation of two ATR 72-600s. “The competition will play”, rejoiced Jean-Christophe Bouissou, who notes that the Pearl of the Pacific remains “the” target.

He announces “significant” price reductions and emphasizes that the public service delegation (DSP) has already lowered prices “from 20 to 25% depending on the destination”. In the Marquesas Islands, Tahiti Air Charter (TAC) is forced to finance helicopter rotations, for lack of having received the conformity of its operating manuals for the Ua Pou and Ua Huka runways. As the Cessna Caravan received a short take-off kit, Jean-Christophe Bouissou explained that the State Civil Aviation Service (SEAC) considered it “a second-hand aircraft”. But he was optimistic and counted for a launch of the rotations by plane “as of this month”.

Telephony: a “bad trial”

“When we sign a contract, we execute a contract …” The vice-president, who at the time was the initiator of the establishment of the Polynesian Competition Authority (APC), insisted that the government is still ” very pro-competition ”, including in the case of mobile telephony, despite criticism of support for Onati, a subsidiary of the holding company OPT.

“The battle between Onati and Pacific Mobile Telecom is a battle for the execution of a contract freely concluded between the parties”, he insisted on underlining, not without declaring himself “saddened that politics are involved in it”. He assured that the Country was not trying to disadvantage Vodafone and denounced a “bad trial”. He also regretted that the population was taken to task and tried to calm the game between the two companies at loggerheads: “I think that the two operators have an interest in working together”. In particular, to avoid an unnecessary multiplication of pylons, a competence which nevertheless falls to the regulator.

Finally, Jean-Christophe Bouissou reacted to the indignant statements of Father Christophe, relating to administrative delays for the future Te Vaiete reception center. He first paid tribute to the work of the religious and wished to assure him that there was “no plot against this file”, but that there was for all that “no privilege, including on a file that we want to see succeed ”. Bernard Amigues, head of the planning and town planning department, explained that it was not a simple file concerning a building of more than 650 m2 in R + 1 and that the instructing agents have more of 900 files in stock.

The country has promised for 2022 a dematerialization of procedures for building permit applications and “an improvement in processing flows”.

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