Fijian carrier Air Fiji has stopped operating aircraft because it is in financial difficulty.

News reports in Fiji quote the carrier's chairman, Wu Shengyue, as saying Air Fiji stopped operating because it needs "to avoid the risk of violation of laws for carrying business for an insolvent company."

The news reports say Wu made the remarks in a letter to shareholders.

Air Fiji officials were unable to be reached when ATI called today because the airline's main telephone lines have been disconnected.

The airline also says on its website it is no longer taking bookings.

Air Fiji's owners are the Government of Tuvalu, a small island nation near Fiji, and China National Aero-Technology Import & Export (CATIC), a Chinese Government body responsible for marketing and selling Chinese-built aircraft overseas.

Some reports in Fiji say a delegation from Tuvalu is in Fiji today to look at whether to revive the airline.

Air Fiji is a domestic carrier that operates Embraer EMB-110 and Harbin Y-12 aircraft. Air Fiji is also a major shareholder in Tongan carrier Airlines Tonga.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news