By Jainarine Deonauth
With a promise to be a very competitive player in the industry, new Surinamese airline, Fly Allways, has entered the Guyana market offering scheduled flights to Suriname and Barbados.
The airline which operates a fleet of Fokker 70 airplanes will be flying the Paramaribo-Georgetown-Bridgetown routes and is expected to boost competition in the regional aviation sector.
At a simple ceremony held this morning (Tuesday) at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport to launch its inaugural flight, several industry officials expressed optimism that the start-up airline will offer high quality services to customers and continue to explore ways in which it could expand its services to other regional destinations.
Representing the Government of Guyana at the launch, Minister within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure Annette Ferguson underscored the importance of the aviation sector to Guyana’s tourism industry and the economy as a whole pledging her ministry’s support in ensuring that the company is successful.
Minister Ferguson explained that for Guyana, air transport is critical for international connectivity as more than 81 percent of tourists come to this country by air, while also underlining the role air transport plays in the sub-sectors such as agriculture, forestry, mining and social services.
The minister expressed optimism that in the future, government anticipates a greater role for the industry as the country’s Oil and Gas sector develops.
She added that with the introduction of new airlines, the aviation industry can only mean well for the Caribbean region, more so, for countries that are affected by the entrance of new services.
The airline which is privately-owned and operates out of Suriname, will offer three weekly flights on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.
In welcoming Fly Allways, Chairman of the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Larry London said the entry of the airline into the Guyana market means well for competition as it would push other carries to offer better services to customers.
London warned that considering what took place in the past with quite a few airlines closing their operations here after a short period, the GCAA “will be watching them like hawks to ensure the Guyanese public wins”.
INews photographer Carl Croker was at the launch this morning and captured the folowing scenes: