Civil Aviation Authority approves provisional Santo base

By Terence Malapa

CAAV Administration Team meets with Minister Ngwele. Photo: Antoine Malsungai

The Civil Aviation Authority of Vanuatu (CAAV) has approved for local airline companies such as Air Taxi, Unity Airlines and Belair Airways to use Santo as a provisional base for a period not exceeding 14 days.

The decision came about after a meeting held by the Minister responsible for aviation matters, Jay Ngwele, with the CAAV Administration Team on the 22nd of July.

In an official correspondence on the 24th July 2020 to the local airlines, excluding Air Vanuatu, CAAV Director, Jackie Trief, said the provisional approval for Santo base is granted with some conditions, following recommendations from the Government to provide adequate service delivery to people efficiently and effectively reaching all islands of Vanuatu.

The provisional arrangement states that Santo base operations are restricted to a maximum of 14 consecutive days for any given time whereby an aircraft needs to return to base prior to commencing further period of Santo base operations.

It further states that the CAAV director be notified of intention to commencing and termination of each 14 consecutive days of Santo base operations and that CAAV will be increasing surveillance during this provisional approval period.

The temporary approval for Santo Base Operations came into effect on 1st of August 2020 and will be effective until 31st December 2020 unless varied, suspended or revoked by the Director for CAAV.