Winston Peters calls for Air NZ to reassess three-year suspension of flights to Vanuatu

Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters is calling on Air New Zealand to reassess its suspension of a flight service to Vanuatu, fearing it could taint New Zealand's relationships with the nation.

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The national carrier stopped flying there in 2016. Source: 1 NEWS

The national carrier stopped flying the three-and-a-half hour journey over concerns the country's runway was not in good condition.

But now, three years on, the runway has been repaired and Mr Peters says New Zealand's reputation could be tainted by the refusal to fly to Vanuatu's Bauerfield Airport.

"Their original excuse, if it was to have any validity, has gone but it still means we've got to talk to them in the interest of Vanuatu people," he says.

Mr Peters, who also serves as the Foreign Affairs Minister and has been visiting the island nation, says he intends to speak with the airline when he returns.