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Time runs out for Samoan airline

Board decides against extension request

Fiji’s Air Transport Licensing Board has made a startling revelation surrounding American Samoa based airline Inter Island Airways’ much awaited entry into Fiji’s domestic air transport market. ATLB Chairman Ernest Dutta says the airline was granted a one year provisional licence in November 2012 to operate domestic flights in Fiji. Inter Island Airways licence to operate has expired since last November bringing more uncertainty around its plans to start operations in the country.

Dutta says the airline has lodged a renewal for the provisional license but ALTB has decided to put this on hold until they are able to get their Air Operators Certificate (AOC) from the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji (CAAF). He says they will issue the license if the airline can show progress in acquiring proper CAAF certification. “The Board had initially granted Inter Island Airways a provisional licence on 21st November 2012 for one year to allow the company to acquire their aircraft types and to go through the motions of obtaining technical clearance from the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji for an Airline Operator’s Certificate,” Dutta said. “This is standard practice when issuing a new operator a provisional licence.

The Board had received an application of renewal of this provisional licence but the Board has responded that it will review this application once technical formalities for the acquisition of an AOC is completed. The Board has been advised that an AOC has as yet to be issued. The Board is awaiting formal advice from this company on its future intentions and will act accordingly.”

The future of Inter Island Airways (Fiji) Limited is still in doubt given their situation. However Inter Island Airways has now indicated launching its Fiji operations in mid November, yet again postponing its start date due to CAAF compliance requirements.

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