A proposed trans-Tasman code share agreement rejected by Australia's competition watchdog is not critical to Air New Zealand's future, says chief executive Rob Fyfe.
The code share with Qantas was just one of eight large projects the airline had on the go, he said.
Air NZ and Qantas have to decide by the end of next week whether to call for a hearing before the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, go direct to appeal on the draft decision, or walk away, The Dominion Post reported today.
The commission rejected the proposal last week on the grounds it would benefit only the airlines and not passengers.
Mr Fyfe said the code share would help ensure all routes were self supporting, with no cross-subsidisation within the business.
"But in the whole scheme of what is going on in the airline at the moment, it is one of about eight key initiatives that in order of magnitude have equivalent value to this proposal on the Tasman," he said.
Among the initiatives were talks with airport workers on ways to save $20 million a year, assessing new long-haul routes, and replacing its fleet.