BUENOS AIRES ÃÂ¢€” Chilean private company Sky Airline, which currently serves the Chilean domestic market, said that it is planning an imminent expansion of its route network to Córdoba and Mendoza in central Argentina, as part of wider plans to also fly to Sao Paulo, Lima and Madrid.
Sky told MercoPress in a written statement that its expansion into Argentina is just a matter of redtape and that it has already appointed a legal and a commercial representative in Argentina. It said that "airport operation costs at Buenos Aires are too high. We are watching how the new players do. We will assess the situation once new aircraft arrive." It said that regarding the Argentine market, "for the time being" it will just fly from Santiago to Córdoba and Mendoza. The company founded in 2002 has nine 119-seat B737-200 Advanced aircraft and transports 50,000 passengers a month in its single Economic Class. It is considering to hire larger planes for charter services. It also transports cargo. Its operation centre is Santiago's Arturo Merino Benítez airport from where it flies to all main destinations in Chile, except for the Easter Island in the Pacific. It flies to Concepción, Temuco, Puerto Montt, Coyhaique and Punta Arenas to the South, and to Copiapó, Calama, Antofagasta, Iquique and Arica, to the North. Asked whether it had code-sharing accords with other companies it said that for the time being it only has with other airlines the accords usual for the sector. "The idea is to have accords with any company whose clients we can serve." The company's main shareholder is JÃÃ‚Â¼rgen Paulmann. He is the brother of Chilean-German businessman Horst Paulmann, who owns the Cencosud supermarkets group. Sky Airlines said that it has no trade links with Concosud. (MercoPress ÃÂ¢€" Guillermo Háskel)