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Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Audley Shaw, has emphasised that the Government has no intention of abandoning the national airline, Air Jamaica, after it is divested next year.
Addressing members of the Caribbean diaspora, who gathered at an Air Jamaica customer appreciation dinner last night (December 5), at the Westin Hotel in Baltimore, Maryland, Mr. Shaw pointed out that the Government would ensure that it puts the airline on a sound footing, so that the name air Jamaica could continue to live on, and that the airline would continue to provide the great service to which its clients have become accustomed over the years.
“When Air Jamaica is divested next year, Jamaica as a country, will not lose its national airline, as under the proposed divestment agreement, a number of mechanisms will be put in place, among them, that the name Air Jamaica remains,” the Minister explained.
“I want to give you loyal Air Jamaica customers and the people of Jamaica the assurance that the decision of the Government to divest Air Jamaica includes World Bank assistance for the process of putting the airline on a sound footing, once and for all,” he said.
He credited Air Jamaica with providing some 50 per cent of all the passengers who arrive in the island, and that over the past three months, the airline has significantly improved on its on-time arrival record.
Air Jamaica’s President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Bruce Noble, said that Baltimore is an important gateway for Air Jamaica, which has been serving that gateway for 27 years. He commended the airline’s loyal passengers, describing them as a great asset to the airline and the main reason it is still in the air.