Saturday, February 09, 2013

Too windy for me...

It was a wee bit too windy for me to go flying today, so unfortunately I had to cancel the planned flight and watch the airlines do their thing instead.

One interesting visitor that did arrive was this Piper PA46-310P Malibu, ZK-MBU, registered to a Richmond [near Nelson] address.

In other aviation-related news, New Zealand's Commerce Commission has released a report on Wellington International Airport, with the accompanying media release rather pointedly entitled "Commerce Commission final report on Wellington International airport points to excessive profits". Obviously the airport company is questioning the Commerce Commission's report [WIAL media release] and the media is making a bit of noise about the situation [click here, and here for two examples].

Unlike many countries, there is effectively no competition for any of the major airport companies, particularly in the domestic market. Apart from perhaps in Auckland, we are not large enough to sustain more than one airport per city [and Auckland still only has one airport providing large-scale scheduled commercial services]. These natural monopolies are therefore effectively unrestrained [in my opinion] from making excessive profits.

My prediction? The lawyers will get rich, the Government won't do anything, the airport will continue to charge whatever they want to and the public will continue to to pay more for flights, parking and other services than what they might otherwise have to in a truly competitive market.

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