Thursday, January 23, 2014

Ecuadorean Airline Halts Flights to Venezuela

The Ecuadorean airline Tame says it is suspending its once-daily flights to and from Venezuela until that country's government pays it $43 million owed for ticket sales.

Tame General Manager Fernando Guerrero says the flights are halted effective Thursday.

Venezuela's airlines association chief Humberto Figuera told The Associated Press that the government owes carriers a total of $3.3 billion for January alone.

The airlines are victims of Venezuela's rigid currency controls that prevent carriers from repatriating earnings.

At the same time, the bolivar has plunged to a tenth of its official value on the flourishing black market, making tickets sold in Venezuela some of the cheapest in the world.

Venezuela owes bigger airlines such as Colombia's Avianca tens of millions of dollars.


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