The Caribbean needs LIAT – 11th Jun 2013
While Guyana explores its options regarding increasing air lift to the country, two regional tourism ministers would like to see more Caribbean countries, like Guyana, becoming a shareholder governments.
This status will allow for Guyana to play an active role in LIAT’s operations.
Speaking to Capitol News at the just concluded Caribbean Tourism Organization’s Media Market Place in New York Antigua and Barbuda‘s Tourism Minister John Maginley said LIAT continues to provide an invaluable service to the region which is heavily dependent on Tourism.
He said with 60 million US dollar loan from the Caribbean Development Bank the Regional carrier has already source some ATR72 aircraft as it seeks to replace its ageing Dash 8 fleet.
The new planes will be part of a holistic restructuring programme which is aimed at making LIAT more profitable, efficient and also ensuring that it continues to connect several Caribbean Islands.
Also the Minster of Tourism of St Vincent and the Grenadines Cecil Mackee wants more by-ins for Liat from other Caribbean Governments.
He noted that St. Vincent & the Grenadines at the moment only depends on LIAT and other small carriers to transport tourists to the island.
But while other Caribbean countries have seen the value of the inter-regional air carrier, the Guyana Government had stated that it will not be putting any money into LIAT, until it can restructure its management and becomes more efficient.
Despite Guyana’s position Liat continues to service the Guyana route with a daily flight from Barbados, with additional connections.
LIAT is schedule to fly out the Ogle Airport from June 21.
One aviation expert said also that without LIAT flying up and down the region, the regional economies would be affected.