GCAA to direct local airlines to increase flights
Director General of the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Abdulai Alhassan has told Citi Business News the authority is likely to direct domestic airline operators to increase their flights following the temporary suspension of operations of domestic carrier Antrak Air.
‘The pressure will be on the existing airlines to pick the other passengers so we will be talking to them to increase their frequencies on the domestic front. They will have to increase the number of times they fly to Takoradi, Sunyani and Tamale’.
Antrak Air last week announced that it was suspending its operations for three months due to a wet lease arrangement with Spanish airliner, Swift Air to use its ATR 72-500 Turbo Prop aircraft.
A wet lease is an agreement where one airline provides an aircraft, complete crew, maintenance and insurance to another airline that pays by the operated hours.
The lessee provides fuel and cover airport fees and any other duties and taxes. The airline in a statement issued to travel operators said it is notifying operators of “the suspension of our operations for the next three (3) months, effective 10th June 2015?.
“During this period we will be looking at reorganization, as it concerns our business model. We have been compelled to strategically suspend all operations from the domestic market, with the aim restructuring to meet the rapidly changing and competitive environment’.
Citi Business News has gathered that Antrak Air is currently indebted to Swift Air following the Wet Lease agreement.
Director General of the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority, Abdulai Alhassan told Citi Business News, Antrak can only resume operations if they settle their debt. The GCAA boss is however optimistic Antrak Air will resume operations after the three month suspension.
‘’It’s just like a banker customer relationship and once you go into arrears you are blacklisted and then its later resolved.’’