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ARGENTINA | 16-08-2020 08:51

Transport minister hopeful flights in Argentina 'will return in 60 days’

Mario Meoni rules out chances of planes returning to skies on September 1 and says decision will depend on “how the pandemic evolves.”

Transport Minister Mario Meoni says the government is hopeful that regular flights to and from Argentina will restart within the next two months.

The official stressed, however, that the likelihood of aviation authorities granting permission for flights anytime soon was unlikely. Aviation officials at the National Civil Aviation Administration (ANAC) have banned the selling of tickets for flights until September 1 at the earliest and those restrictions may be lifted, the entry and exit of traffic in Argentine airspace will remain in place. 

Pushed by reporters as to a potential return date, Meoni said now “it is not possible to talk about the rehabilitation of flights in a normal way,” but said he was hopeful “air transport will return in the next 60 days.”

The minister, who paid a visit to Ezeiza International Airport last week to view redevelopment work, said said the ban on ticket sales until September 1, put in place by the National Civil Aviation Administration (ANAC),

“Decisions are made according to how the pandemic evolves,” he said.

Meano said officials were “working hard” to prepare health and sanitary protocols that would allow the “return of regular operations.” 

With respect to the authorisation of flights, the government official said that the decision "had to do with the possibilities of each province to receive passengers and monitor them." At the same time, he stressed that "we are still in a quarantine stage, in which the mobility of people is restricted only to labour issues."

"What we are doing is authorising special flights, for those people who can move for work reasons or because they have been stranded in a place far from their home," said Meoni.

He clarified that “the return to normality, as they speak of it, will come when the vaccine exists – in the meantime all that needs to be done is to take protective measures so that there are flights and what we are doing and working on is a comprehensive protocol for all modalities based on caring for people.”

Touching on another hot topic, Meoni also cast doubt over the continuity of operations at the El Palomar Airport, where low-cost carriers have been operating.
“Three airports in the metropolitan area is not reasonable,” said the official. “It is not justified based on the movement of passengers in the sector.”



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