We wrote to Nikki Kaye, Auckland Central MP, asking for her assistance to resolve the issue of the government reimbursing existing ferry operators for SuperGold Card users, while refusing to provide the same level of reimbursement to the new entrant. FUG regards this situation as inherently anti-competitive.
We have now received this response from Associate Transport Minister Craig Foss:
In 2010, a moratorium that prevented new services from participating in the Scheme was introduced to manage the increasingly high costs of the Scheme.
Both the Fullers Group Limited and Sealink Group ferries were already in the Scheme when the moratorium was introduced. The services participating in the Scheme at that time were able to remain in the Scheme.
Explore Group is a new service that has made a commercial decision to operate a service to Waiheke Island while the moratorium is still in place.
A review of the Scheme is currently underway which will also consider the status of the moratorium. A decision on the review is still to be made.
And that’s it.