Australia-New Zealand Direct Line boosted the frequency of its service to North America from the Australian Port of Brisbane, and also announced deals with two other ship lines to extend the carrier's service to Mexico and Central America.

Australia-New Zealand Direct Line and Transportacion Maritima Mexicana SA, Mexico City, signed an exclusive connecting carrier agreement to provide service every 10 days between Mexico and Australia and New Zealand, using Los Angeles as the point of connection. In a related agreement, the Mexican carrier will provide operational support in Mexico for Australia-New Zealand Direct Line through its agency affiliate, Linea Mexicana Pacifica.Australia-New Zealand Direct Line employs its own sales staff in Mexico.

A similar agreement between Australia-New Zealand Direct Line and Nexos Line Inc., Tampa, Fla., lets both companies serve the market between Central America and Australia-New Zealand. Cargo is moved by rail between Houston - one of three U.S. Gulf ports where Nexos Line vessels stop on their way to and from Central America - and Australia-New Zealand Direct Line's direct ports of call in California. Both lines offer service every 10 days.

They will support one another in their respective markets, with Nexos doing marketing and sales for Australia-New Zealand Direct Line in Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and Nicaragua, and Australia-New Zealand Direct Line doing the same for Nexos in Australia and New Zealand.

Australia-New Zealand Direct Line also said its vessels have begun calling Brisbane, an important port for meat exports from Australia.

Since January, Australia-New Zealand Direct Line has chartered space on vessels operated by International Marine Transport Lines to Brisbane. Australia-New Zealand Direct Line vessels Direct Kea and Direct Kookaburra are now also calling there. With the combination of the two services, there is a direct call in Brisbane every 14 days, the carrier said.