The new inter-island air transport tariffs in Cape Verde enter into force on Sunday and the only operator in the archipelago is applying only the maximum prices, in a country where air travel is already considered expensive.
In September, the Cape Verdean Civil Aviation Agency (AAC) announced an average reduction in the country’s maximum domestic fares of 2.33% to take effect on October 28.
The regulator justified the intervention by detecting “some irregularities” practised by Binter Cabo Verde, which also slightly increased the price of tickets with the departure of the Cape Verdean Airline (TACV) from domestic flights in August 2016, height in which Binter became the sole operator in the local market.
Binter disputed the new maximum tariffs four days later, considering that the continuity of the commitments entered into with the Government was in danger and ensured that the measures would “jeopardize the continuity of the service” provided.
At the same time, the operator suspended the sale of tickets for flights after October 28, which resumed after “fruitful meetings”, which did not specify.
Binter also called for the extension of the new maximum fares for January to be extended, which was not met by the Civil Aviation Agency, justifying that it did not find “objective reasons” to justify an extension.
The regulator also stressed that “the criteria dictated by the conditions of the domestic air transport market that motivated price calibration” prevailed in the country where air travel is already considered very expensive.
Binter reacted this week and announced the end of the Bintaço tariff, and of all other economic and promotional tariffs, as of Monday and is only applying the maximum tariffs dictated by AAC, according to simulations made on its official website. Internet.
Considering that with the “imposition” was forced to change the trade policy, Binter also informed that it is in talks with the Government to create a regulatory framework that allows it to operate economically.
AAC said it has decided to “not comment and/or issue further clarifications on the issue of maximum charges”, indicating that “in a timely manner” it will “make the necessary communication with a view to clarifying the public opinion”.
The airline recalled that it was invited in 2012 by the former president of the African Party for the Independence of Cape Verde (PAICV) to enter the market and operate on the inter-island routes, due to the “dramatic financial situation” that TACV was experiencing.
Created in 2014, Binter Cabo Verde is a company with 100% Cape Verdean right, whose sole shareholder is Apoyo Y Logistica Industrial Canaria, Sociedade Limitada. It has been operating on the domestic lines since November 2016 and since August of last year, which ensures exclusive connections after the departure of the public airline TACV, which is in the process of being restructured with a view to its privatization.
This week, Cape Verdean Prime Minister Ulisses Correia e Silva said that there is no contract between the government and Binter Cabo Verde, but rather a memorandum of understanding “which has no contractual binding form”.
The memorandum provided for the entry of Binter until June, but the government said it would not buy the 19% stake in Binter Cabo Verde, which together with the 30% guaranteed by the domestic line, made up 49% of the planned share.