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Updated: Fly Jamaica gets greenlight for New York, Toronto routes

The Jamaica-based Fly Jamaica Airline has been given the green light to fly the Georgetown to New York and Toronto routes.

This announcement was made by Cabinet Secretary Dr. Roger Luncheon on Wednesday. “Cabinet granted its approval to Fly Jamaica, the airline to operate the Georgetown/New York and the Georgetown/Toronto routes. The approval came after the standard evaluative procedures by the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority and the recommendation to Cabinet by Public Works Minister Robeson Benn,”  he told a news conference.

Fly Jamaica’s Chief Executive Officer, Paul Ronald Reece told Demerara Waves Online News (www.demwaves.com) that he could not immediately say when flights would begin to and from Guyana.

Director General of the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Zulfikar Mohammed said the airline still has to apply to his regulatory agency for a Foreign Operator’s Specifications by using the Air Operators Certificate that was granted by Jamaica last September.

Now that Cabinet has granted approval, the GCAA has to formally notify the carrier which is being managed by a team of veteran civil aviation experts from both Guyana and Jamaica.

Mohammed said Fly Jamaica also has to lodge a GUY$40 million bond, a financial facility that is usually used by Guyanese authorities to help refund passengers should an airline decide to shut down operations.

It was not immediately clear whether the airline had acceded to requests by the Guyana government for financial records.

The approval comes just about one month after Delta Airlines ceased flying the New York route because according to that carrier, it was no longer profitable to do so.

Aviation experts noted that the profitability of Fly Jamaica would depend heavily on the fact that at least one of the flights would have to pass through the carrier’s home-base, Jamaica.