Published on: 9/6/07.
|Eagle-eyed: Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation in St Lucia Senator Allen Chastanet speaking yesterday said the move to American Eagle came as a result of the void left by LIAT. In the background is local Minister of Tourism Noel Lynch.|
Government is not opposed to an American Eagle flight on the lucrative Barbados-St Lucia route.
In fact, said Minister of Tourism Noel Lynch, the additional airlift is welcomed, as it would not only provide additional seats but also take some of the pressure off LIAT.
Speaking during a brief welcome ceremony for the inaugural American Eagle flight that touched down at the Grantley Adams International Airport yesterday evening, Lynch said it appeared that the service had been contentious.
However, even if that was so, there was little that Government could do to stop American Eagle flying into Barbados, he said, explaining that under the multi-lateral air services agreement in the region, St Lucia could designate a carrier to fly here.
He said that as a majority shareholder of LIAT by virtue of a Caribbean Development Bank loan, Barbados had to take advantage of the new service.
St Lucia’s Minister of Tourism, Allen Chastanet, who, along with other officials and media representatives came in on the flight, said the country turned to America Eagle to fill the void left by the reduced LIAT service.
"Since the amalgamation of LIAT and Caribbean Star, capacity has been cut by 50 per cent and the overall drop in business has been 45 per cent and that is business that has not gone away. (JW)