As a geographically-isolated island nation, New Zealand has a unique dependence on aviation.
It is currently the only way to get high value, time-sensitive freight to and from our country and the only practical way for Kiwis to explore the world.
Aviation is also the most efficient way to move people and products around New Zealand’s islands.
Good connectivity is important for the regions of New Zealand.
It enables people to reach their friends and family quickly, to do business and to access education and healthcare.
High-quality air connectivity is an important driver of social and economic wellbeing.
The vitality of Central Otago’s economy depends on the efficient movement of people and products
Many of Central Otago’s key sectors of employment require high-quality transport connections to operate successfully.
- Wine, fruit and vegetable producers rely on travellers for their seasonal workforce. Nearly one in four international visitors will visit a vineyard or winery.
- Exporters of premium fresh foods like stone fruit rely on airfreight to get their products to overseas markets quickly.
- Growing sectors like screen production, technology and education rely on the efficient movement of people and equipment in and out of the region.
Efficient air connectivity will help these and other sectors to grow and thrive in Central Otago, providing employment opportunities for current and future generations.
What will happen if extra capacity is not found?
If nothing is done, air capacity constraints will make it harder for Central Otago to move people and products.
A shortage of air capacity is likely to result in:
- Reduced choice: It will become harder to secure seats or freight slots at the times and days people want.
- Longer journey times: Some people will need to drive or send freight to other airports further away to access flights.
- Increased cost: Prices are likely to rise as competition for seats and freight capacity increases.
- Higher emissions: Carbon emissions are likely to grow as a result of increased driving and over flying further than they need to.
- Disconnection: Travelling to and from Central Otago will become too hard or expensive for some Central Otago residents, resulting in disconnection.
- Economic loss: Air capacity constraints will reduce economic opportunities for industries that depend directly or indirectly on air travel.
Local residents are more likely to be disadvantaged as visitors are more likely to book early and pay higher prices.