Cape Verde: Government guarantees changes in air operations

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The Minister of Tourism and Transport of Cape Verde, Carlos Santos, stated, on Monday, that the Government plans, in 2024, to consolidate the transformation in the Transport sector and continue the process of reviewing the legal framework for civil aviation.

The government official made the statements in an interview with Inforpress within the scope of the State Budget (OE) proposal for the economic year 2024, to learn about the general lines of the OE and the projects scheduled to be carried out next year by the Ministry of Tourism and Transport.

“In the area of ​​Air Transport, in 2024, we want to continue the process of reviewing the legal framework for civil aviation, which consists of improving, facilitating and reducing bureaucracy in the rules to make Cape Verde a more competitive country, within the vision that we have from the international air platform”, he stated.

The Executive also intends to invest in creating conditions for the materialization of the island of Sal as an air hub, indicating that the government’s perspective is to consolidate the transformations achieved in that sector.

With regard to Internal Transport, the minister continued, the Government wants to continue investing in improving connectivity in partnership with the operator Bestfly, regretting, on the other hand, the fact that Cabo Verde Airlines has been greatly affected by the effects of the pandemic.

“The Government understood that once again it should save the company because it understands that this company is an important part of the strategy for developing the concept of a platform country in the Atlantic. And because we are an island country, which has a diaspora that today plays a determining role in the Cape Verdean economy and because we are also a country in which tourism is the main sector of the economy”, he assured.

He highlighted the actions carried out by the Board of Directors of CV Airlines, through the company’s business plan, in order to guarantee the stabilization and resumption of traditional routes mainly to countries where Cape Verdean communities are located.

“Obviously, the process is not easy because it is a capital-intensive sector, which means that it requires a large financial effort. But we understand that the effects and benefits that we will have at the level of the national economy, at the level of well-being, being of the Cape Verdean people, residents and in the diaspora, we will continue to invest in the company”, he highlighted.

Recovery of three European destinations

In this sense, he welcomed the resumption of routes to three European destinations, namely Portugal, France and Italy, informing that destinations to the United States and Brazil will be opened very soon. “I believe that we are in a recovery phase, we have been carrying out an assessment step by step, and I think that 2024 awaits us a good year, with the growth in demand, which will respond to what we want, which is to have demand so that the company begins to take its steps alone”, he highlighted, stating, however, that even at this stage, the Government must continue to provide support to the company.

The minister considered, however, that 2024 could be a year of many uncertainties at an international level, taking into account the context of wars, having expressed, however, hope that next year will be a year of the milestone of one million tourists arriving in Cape Verde .

“So that we can bring other niche markets that may respond to the diversification that we want, in which Cape Verdean businesspeople can play an important role, particularly businesspeople coming from the diaspora”, he said.

And this diversification, he concluded, is part of the vision of tourism, which the Government wants to develop, consolidate, highlighting that TACV can play a decisive role in helping with this diversification and expanding the territorial scope of tourism in Cape Verde.

Actions within the framework of the energy transition

The deputy and member of the PAICV National Council (opposition), Luís Pires, emphasized that the energy transition continues to be one of the “fallacies” of the current Government, warning of a “clear setback” in the Energy sector across the country.

Quoted yesterday by Inforpress at a press conference at the party headquarters in the city of Praia, Luís Pires explained that the unique Fogo plant, the third set up and inaugurated by PAICV in 2016 to reinforce the island’s energy distribution capacity, represents an investment of 5.8 million euros. However, he criticized that after eight years, the Government, in addition to not having made “any investment” in the sector, also “failed to carry out due planning and maintenance” of the single plant.

Luís Pires considered that the abandonment of the modern photovoltaic plant, valued at 100 thousand contos and built during the years of PAICV governance, constitutes “a crime”, in the same way that it illustrates “very well” the insensitivity of this Government towards the current situation from the island of Fogo.

The deputy elected for the Fogo constituency also highlighted that the aforementioned solar plant was already charging more than 80% of its capacity to the Electra network when it had minor problems in two of the 17 towers.

“This Government cannot justify the abandonment of a project of this magnitude that could be, at this moment, helping to pump water, avoiding the cutting of this essential asset, worsening the problems even further”, he highlighted, warning that without interventions, Cabo Green runs the risk of “worse” setbacks similar to those experienced in the 90s.

Jornal de Angola

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