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Air Nauru gets its wings back.

SYDNEY, March 10 Kyodo

The tiny Pacific island nation Nauru has purchased a new aircraft to replace a Boeing 737 repossessed by American financiers in December last year, the government of Nauru said Friday.

The Taiwan government funded the purchase of a new Boeing 737 for the national carrier, Air Nauru, Nauruan Transport Minister Keiren Keke said in a statement.

''Nauru is particularly grateful for the assistance and foresight of the Republic of China (Taiwan) in helping us to achieve this important milestone,'' Keke said.

Nauru's sole aircraft was repossessed in Melbourne by the American Export-Import Bank after the government failed for several years to meet debt repayments.

Since the repossession, Air Nauru has run costly charter services to maintain essential services between Nauru, Kiribati, Fiji, the Marshall Islands, the Solomon Islands and Australia.

The Nauru government is in final negotiations with a U.S.-based aircraft sales agent. The new plane is expected to be in service in April.
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Publication:Asian Economic News
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 13, 2006
Words:160
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