Domestic travel industry sees significant improvement – Benn
- Evidence reflective in increase of traffic at Ogle
Over the years the domestic aircraft industry has seen significant growth with the traffic at the Ogle aerodrome recording a 50 per cent increase.
With 38 domestic aircrafts and a total of six companies operating at the Ogle airport for 2011 there were 145,064 passengers passing through the airport. While in 2010 there were only 97,000 persons. This shows a significant improvement in the sector as well as other sectors.
As it relates to the transport of cargo, in 2011 there was a 49 per cent increase with 20.2 million pounds of cargo being transported through that port while in 2010 there was only 13.5 million pounds of cargo.
During a recent commissioning of two Cessna aircraft added to the Air Services Limited Fleet, Transport Minister Robeson Benn lauded the developments in the industry.
“We are moving from the Islander standard to the Caravan and I would say that the move is a significant one with respect to comfort and safety, with respect to that platform the Caravan… The ambience, care, skill too and standards to which it has to be operated is significant improvement from the Islander,” the Public Works Minister said.
With the transition mode being set, Minister Benn believes that the next platform should be addressed by working with the industry, so that affordable operations and safety and efficiency of the industry towards passengers, can be achieved.
“Government of Guyana through its Ministry (of Public Works) has been working hard to improve the facilitation for the domestic airline particularly…We are aware that we have been in a partnership with the EU and with the Ogle Airport Inc., to spend some $30M which has seen an increase in the runway here at Ogle; a new and extended runway to make Ogle a regional airport for Guyana,” Minister Benn said.
He added that there have been other significant investments from the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority which saw $1B being invested to improve flight instrumentation and navigation systems both at Ogle and Timehri.
“We may be also aware of the investments we are making too, with respect to the Timehri Airport with respect to having a well integrated airline infrastructure and industry in our country which will see improvement in relation to business, developments in relation to having our Diaspora coming to our country and improvements in tourism,” the Public Works Minister said.
He explained that the Government and the Public Works Ministry pay particular attention to the question of domestic aviation.
“Guyana is comparatively a large country to the rest of the Caribbean…The space we occupy…our sovereign space is very large, you can fly perhaps two hours before you can land at Massakenari (Region Nine) in the Wai Wai country…We recognise the great necessity and need to continue contact with those far flung communities,” Minister Benn said.