(Reuters) - Air New Zealand (AIR.NZ) said on Wednesday it would end its seven-year alliance with Virgin Australia Holdings (VAH.AX) covering flights between the two countries.

An Air New Zealand plane takes off from Kingsford Smith International Airport in Sydney, Australia, February 22, 2018. REUTERS/Daniel Munoz

The joint venture, which allowed for schedule and pricing coordination as well as codeshares, expires in October and the parties will not apply to renew the alliance, the New Zealand airline said.

FILE PHOTO - A rainbow from a passing rain shower sits over Virgin Australia aircraft at Sydney's Airport in Australia, August 5, 2016. REUTERS/Jason Reed/File Photo

Virgin Australia said Air New Zealand had notified it of the end of the alliance, in which the Australian carrier was the smaller partner. It rivaled a competing joint venture between Qantas Airways Ltd (QAN.AX) and Emirates which received an additional five-year authorization in March.

Virgin Australia CEO John Borghetti said the end of the alliance “provides opportunities for the Virgin Australia Group on the Tasman, including operating both the Virgin Australia and Tigerair Australia brands in the market”.

Air New Zealand Chief Revenue Officer Cam Wallace said the market dynamics on flights between Australia and New Zealand had changed and the time was right for each airline to focus on its own objectives.

Reporting by Aaron Saldanha in Bengaluru and Jamie Freed in Singapore; Editing by Himani Sarkar

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