The Independent Consumer and Competition Commission has revoked the authorization determinations for code-share arrangements between Air Niugini and Qantas.
The revocation is based on the decision of Air Niugini and Qantas to cease the code-share services between various Papua New Guinean and Australian routes, which amounted to a material change of circumstance pursuant to Section 80 of the ICCC Act.
The ICCC Commissioner and CEO, Paulus Ain, said authorization A2015/18 was granted on the 22nd of April 2016, for three years, for Air Niugini to continue its code-share arrangement with Qantas for the Port Moresby–Brisbane and Port Moresby-Sydney routes.
“The Port Moresby–Brisbane sector code-share covers both passenger and freight component, while the Port Moresby-Sydney only covers passenger services,” said Mr. Ain.
Authorization A2016/24 was granted on the 09th of November, 2016 for Air Niugini to enter into and give effect to a code-share agreement with Qantas, on a ‘free sale’ basis, on flights operated by Air Niugini between Port Moresby and Cairns for a period of five years, commencing from the 10th of November 2016.
Mr. Ain said that on the 16th of February, 2018, Qantas submitted an application to the International Air Service Commission of Australia, requesting a variation on existing capacity determinations to permit the utilization of capacity for code-share services with Air Niugini on a free sale basis.
“However, on 30th April, 2018, the IASC released its draft determination proposing not to allow Qantas to vary its determination relating to the code-share arrangements with Air Niugini on the PNG routes to free sale. Consequently, Qantas withdrew its application from the IASC on 16th May 2018.”
“Air Niugini then advised the ICCC of the situation and indicated that the code-share services with Qantas effectively ceased on 1st July 2018.” Mr. Ain said.
Mr. Ain explained that the cessation of the codeshare services by the parties amounted to a material change in circumstance, prompting the ICCC to revoke the mentioned authorizations and related variations.