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Lusa - Business News - East Timor: Dili, Singapore flights to end on 30 March - Air Timor director

Dili, Mar. 19 (Lusa) – Flights between Dili and Singapore, operated by Air Timor, are to end on 30 March after Singapore Airlines refused to renew the charter contract for the air link, an official source from the company told Lusa.
“We are sorry for this decision. We cannot continue these flights. The last flight will be on 30 March,” said Syed Abdul Rahman, the director of Air Timor, which operated the link through aeroplanes contracted to SilkAir, a subsidiary of Singapore Airlines.
The end of operations not only affects the transport of passengers but also the transport of some important cargo, such as pharmaceuticals, vehicle and aviation parts, normally transported on flights from Singapore to the Timorese capital.
Various companies, including Heineken – the only international factory in the country – have already written the government to request an intervention to prevent the route from closing, according to letters seen by Lusa.
Officially, Singapore Airlines justified the decision not to renew the contract due to a process of “reintegration” of SilkAir in the parent company and the expansion of the regular services on its own network.
However, the decision arose after a long process of uncertainty since the end of last year on the status of Air Timor, with indecision on the license attributed to the company by the Business Verification Service (SERVE).
At the end of the year, Singapore Airlines confirmed to Air Timor the intention to renew the charter contract for another year, intending only to revise its value, but the final decision of SERVE on assigning a new license to Air Timor was only announced in February.
In January, the director of Serve, Florêncio Sanches, questioned the legality of the operation of flights between Dili and Singapore.
On Tuesday, Sanches confirmed to Lusa that the license of Air Timor had been “renewed for another year,” explaining that “some issues related to the shareholder composition” of the company, which has had changes, needed some clarification.

Agency : LUSA

Date : 2019-03-20 08:54:26


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