Published On: Mon, Jun 18th, 2018

Gijsbertha: InselAir to resume flights to Venezuela

InselAirWILLEMSTAD, CARACAS - The local airline InselAir can resume its operations to and from Maiquetía, Valencia and Punto Fijo in Venezuela in the short term. An agreement was reached last week between a Curaçao delegation headed by the Minister of Finance, Kenneth Gijsbertha and the Venezuelan Civil Aviation Authority (INAC).

The Minister of Finance traveled to Venezuela last Thursday with InselAir representatives to hold meetings with Venezuelan aviation authorities that are of the utmost importance for the future and the survival of the airline. According to Gijsbertha, the agreement on resuming flights to Venezuela is 'big news for InselAir', which has not been flying to the neighboring country since March 2017.

Venezuela's million debt to InselAir is one of the reasons that the government of Curaçao was forced last year to inject 18 million dollars (33 million guilders) into the ailing airline. In exchange, the government received a right of pledge and voting rights on 51 percent of InselAir's shares.

And due to this financial issue, the airline was forced to stop flights to various countries including its gold mine Venezuela. InselAir has been in a financially difficult position since 2016, mainly as a result of too large a workforce, setting up its own maintenance department that could not support itself, insufficient (financial) management and the need to pre-finance flights to and from Venezuela for too long.

At the moment the airline still has a claim of about 67 million dollars on the Venezuelan currency exchange regulator Cencoex.

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