Well, there we are. In recognition of Eastern's sterling contribution to the Caribbean market 10 regional governments have decided to contribute up to US$1b to keep the carrier flying. In so doing they hope to introduce some more new planes to serve the region, with the 717-300 being a possible type. It's rumoured that Cuba is strongly interested too... Meanwhile BWIA and Air Jamaica are already crying foul (fowl?) as they are being left to languish.
Guyana Airways is introducing the new 777-300 on its new services from GEO to YYZ
. With this jet it hopes to keep Tower Air off the Guyana market altogether - those old 747s cannot match up! Tower has already planned a major fight with up to 5 A380s on order for possible delivery in 2004. There is just one problem though - those Airbuses may not be able to land at GEO...
Meanwhile CaribAir is looking to upgrade its Herons to Saunders ST27 standards to deal with the increased competition. After all, with Carib Express bringing in a dozen 728 Jets on the regional routes, EC
Xpress finding the Viscounts a reliable and cost-effective replacement for the Dash 8s that it originally had (and went bust with, some new investors bought it off JM
and have offered a "new level of service") and Air Caribbean's YS11s up and down all over the region with hourly inter-island shuttles, it has to keep up with the times!
All this while "regional" carrier LIAT is on the verge of collapse as the regional governments redirect investment to Eastern. Wait - hot off the press - the Caribbean governments have decided to unite the region into 1 country next year and LIAT will be the national regional carrier alongside Eastern! More cussing at BW
All this under the warm Caribbean sunshine - which will also soon shine upon Sabena's A340-600s on their BRU