Barbudans grounded: Gov’t pulls subsidy from Fly Montserrat

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Barbudans grounded: Gov’t pulls subsidy from Fly Montserrat

Unread post by bimjim » Wed Dec 21, 2016

http://antiguaobserver.com/barbudans-gr ... ontserrat/

Barbudans grounded after gov’t pulls subsidy from Fly Montserrat
December 20, 2016

Air travel to and from Antigua will be more difficult for Barbudans this month as Fly Montserrat further reduces its calls to the island after the Government of Antigua & Barbuda ended the “subsidy” to the airline two months ago.

According to Member of Parliament (MP) for Barbuda and Minister of Barbuda Affairs Arthur Nibbs, rescinding the subsidy was done in order to make way for the government’s joint venture Barbuda Airways, which is still grounded.

“It’s now purely up to Fly Montserrat to make it economical. From my understanding they need to have at least seven persons per flight to operate and break even,” Nibbs said.

“The government has already approved the establishment of Barbuda Airways … so we didn’t see it economical to continue to give a subsidy to Fly Montserrat when we’re going to have our own airways coming on stream soon.”

Managing Director of Fly Montserrat, Nigel Harris told OBSERVER media, “The government set the price at $50 US dollars to US $55 each way and in order to meet those prices with our overhead requires a subsidy.”

He added that since it was discontinued at the start of October, Fly Montserrat had done “around 12 flights in November” and “a few more in December” simply to honour commitments to customers who had already booked.

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