Air Pacific will change its name to Fiji Airways next year to capitalise on the Pacific island nation's positive global brand, Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said on Tuesday.
Sayed-Khaiyum said the national airline, which posted a loss of Fj$3.6 million ($2.0 million) in the 12 months to March 2011, would complete the rebranding by the end of next year.
"The Fijian brand conjures up different images," he said in a statement.
"If you go to Europe and you mention Fiji, people will never respond to you in a negative fashion even though they may have never seen the map of Fiji."
The airline was known as Fiji Airways until 1970, when it changed its name to Air Pacific to reflect its increasing reach in the South Pacific.
"Despite our 42 years of efforts to market the name Air Pacific, Fiji is the word that resonates and motivates people to find us, to buy tickets on us, and to build vacation packages to our South Pacific paradise," chief executive Dave Pflieger said.
Sayed-Khaiyum said the government was continuing talks with Qantas Airways to acquire the 46.3 stake the Australian flag carrier holds in Air Pacific.
Source: AFP Asian Edition