The Falkland Islands Executive Council agreed on Wednesday to appoint a preferred airline operator to provide the second midweek flight between the Falkland Islands and South America.
According to a press release from the Falkland Islands Government: Detailed negotiations will now begin, however at this stage the identity of the preferred operator, as well as the discussions, will need to remain confidential for commercial reasons. The Falkland Islands Government will provide a further update on the outcome of these discussions in July.
The final decision on the way forward will be made by the Legislative Assembly and ExCo in the next few months, but this will not be before August, to allow sufficient time to conclude discussions, noted the press release today.
Member of Legislative Assembly Barry Elsby said: “On behalf of all of the MLAs, I’m pleased to confirm this concrete step towards realising our ambition to establish a second weekly air link which will be of benefit to the Falkland Islands and all our people.”
Carriers from Chile, Brazil and Uruguay showed an interest in the Falklands second scheduled air link. Two of the carriers are based in Chile, two in Brazil and one in Uruguay, according to the foreign ministers from Argentina and UK, Jorge Faurie and Boris Johnson, although they were not named.
Last month Foreign Secretary Johnson was in Buenos Aires for a three-day visit when the airlines proposal, with a stopover in Argentina, was one of a full agenda of issues addressed by officials from both countries.
Currently LATAM Airlines operates the only weekly scheduled flight to the Falkland Islands from Chile. Once a month the flight stops in Rio Gallegos, Argentina.