ST JOHN’S, Antigua – A sizable cash injection of eight million dollars will be pumped into regional carrier LIAT, half of which is expected to be delivered this week.
The funds are coming from the government of Dominica Dominica whose prime minister Roosevelt Skeritt made the disclosure at an OECS meeting in St Vincent & the Grenadines last week.
A week ago, the airline recorded 35 million dollars in losses after fire destroyed its maintenance hanger, an aircraft; tools, operations office and several other offices.
Prime Minister of Antigua & Barbuda Baldwin Spencer said his Dominican counterpart is committed to delivering on his promises to assist the airline.
Spencer said the Skeritt administration has been expressing these sentiments for a while and felt the time was right in light of the recent events.
“The idea, according to him, is to invest some eight million dollars into LIAT in terms of equity and he is prepared to disburse four of that almost immediately. In a week or so that will be done,” Spencer said in an interview with OBSERVER Media.
“Clearly, this represents tangible support, particularly at this time.”
According to the country’s chief servant, a number of other countries, including St Lucia, have also expressed interest in supporting LIAT after the recent fire at its headquarters in Antigua.
He notes that the added support at this juncture is very critical.
“I would hope as we go though this crisis, which has developed by virtue of this unfortunate burning of the maintenance building, hangar and all other areas of LIAT, that it will bring us together in terms of addressing some of the deep-rooted problems that LIAT would have been encountering over a period of time,” Spencer said.
LIAT’s management is still working with the investigative authorities in Antigua as well as the Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority (ECCAA) to ascertain the cause of the fire.