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Thu 26 Jul 2007 09:28 AM

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Aussie firm may bid for NZ airport

Australia Pacific Airports is considering a counter bid to Dubai's play for Auckland International Airport.

Australia Pacific Airports (APAC) said on Wednesday it was considering bidding for New Zealand's Auckland International Airport, which this week agreed to sell a controlling stake to Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE).

"We don't have an offer in but it is under consideration," an APAC spokesman said, confirming media reports.

APAC owns Melbourne Airport and Launceston airport in Tasmania state. APAC is owned by AMP, Deutsche Asset Management, Ferrovial's BAA and Westpac Banking's Hastings Funds Management.

Gulf state-backed DAE offered to pay up to $2.08 billion for a controlling stake in Auckland Airport on Monday.

Under the offer, which values the whole of Auckland Airport at $4.5 billion, a new company will be created, in which DAE will have a stake of 51 to 60%. DAE was set up last year by the government of Dubai and other interests.

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