ENAP Refineries absorbs fuel storage; Chilean travel agents face new priorities; Big party in Valparaiso for USS Reagan seamen.
ENAP Refineries absorbs fuel storage.
Chile's state owned oil company ENAP, decided the fusion of EMALCO, a company dedicated to fuel storage with ENAP Refineries thus enabling the corporation to improve competitiveness, reduce costs and better industrial management. According to an official release Emalco was created in 1980 with the purpose of managing and storing different types of fuel and refined ENAP products from local refineries, which was then sold to major private wholesale distributors. Enap Refineries absorbs all Emalco's assets and staff and will also have jurisdiction over logistic operations and transportation in Chile's oil and gas pipelines.
Chilean travel agents face new priorities. A greater diversification and mechanisms to limit responsibilities under Chile's new Consumer Protection legislation are some of the main priorities faced by travel agents that recently celebrated their national congress in Santiago under the title of "Current Challenges".
Jorge Norambuena, president of the Punta Arenas chapter of the Chilean Travel Agents Association told Punta Arenas press that there's an urgent need "to diversify our products which are mainly selling tickets and overseas tours".
Since Punta Arenas has an only air operator Lan and the Chilean government is committed to promoting tourism, "we're in need of more competition and we therefore hope that Aerolíneas del Sur will soon be travelling to the south, and a third alternative, Sky will also become a further option for Magallanes region travellers".
Mr. Norambuena revealed that while in Santiago they contacted Aerolíneas del Sur on the issue and strongly requested that once operations begin, "special situations such as illness, death of a next of kin, be contemplated avoiding Magallanes residents to pay almost 500 US dollars to fly to Santiago".
Another issue that was addressed in the congress was the fact that the new Chilean consumer legislation makes travel agents liable when the sale of deficient or incomplete services regarding domestic and overseas tours.
"We're intermediaries, we sell third parties products and it's virtually impossible for us to check the quality of services either in Chilean or overseas tour packages", argued Mr. Norambuena.
The new law means any demand regarding an unsatisfactory airline or hotel, even overseas, the passenger can make a claim before the travel agent involved, "and we're initially responsible".
And once the case is cleared, "we're still responsible and would eventually have to demand for example a hotel in Mexico. This is a most serious situation", insisted Mr. Norambuena who said the organization had contacted Congressmen requesting an amendment to the bill making it a shared responsibility and not travel agents the only defendants. Big party in Valparaiso for USS Reagan seamen.
Big party in Valparaiso for USS Reagan seamen.Chilean Aids prevention organizations distributed over the weekend thousands of condoms among United States personnel from the nuclear powered aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan and escort vessels currently visiting Valparaiso, Chile's main port. The call of the most modern and recently built carrier of the US Navy and its crew of 4,500 has attracted an estimated two thousand "sex workers" from Chile and neighbouring countries, according to the Chilean press. USS Reagan is sailing from Norfolk to its base destination in San Diego, California, and is circumventing the South American continent because she's too large to cross the Panama Canal. Her previous call was in Rio do Janeiro. It is estimated that US Navy personnel will be spending between 1,5 and 2 million US dollars, an average 50 US dollars per capita, before the USS Reagan heads north from Valparaíso on Tuesday. Restaurants, bars, night clubs waited for the US seamen with an abundant supply of 50,000 litres of beer, 20,000 hamburgers and ten tons of fries, plus English speaking hostesses. The local police, many of them English speaking have reinforced the docks area and adjoining streets where most "sex" clubs are located, and at least 300 crooks and petty thieves were "temporarily evicted" from the city to avoid incidents.