The Minister of Transport, Guillermo Dietrich, confirmed today that the Government of Cambiemos has no intention of privatising the national flag carrier Aerolineas Argentinas. "Not only did it not disappear, but it has doubled the number of passengers," he explained.
The minister defended the airline’s management: "Today the rates are cheaper, there are more aircraft, more routes, better customer service, better punctuality, and it needs much less money than before".
Minister Dietrich said that with an "efficient" management team in place, the government has cast aside any suggestion of privatising the airline.
"We have proved the opposite to privatization can work." The airline is acquiring new aircraft and many more routes; the previous Kirchnerism government has insisted the airline must make a social contribution to justify the 5 billion Dollars it received in subsidies. We have shown that premise to be false, he said.
In that respect, he added that the state airline commanded by Mario Dell'Acqua after the resignation of Isela Costantini at the end of 2016, did not connect the Argentine peoples but only reflected the needs of those living in Mar del Plata, a city that was "exclusive and expensive. "
"Before, average annual losses were 700 million Dollars. Today average annual losses are only 90 million Dollars. So, we must recognise the difference between that old vision of disaster and today’s vision of growth and optimism," said the Minister of Transport.
The minister also pointed out that in 2015 there were only four flights in season to Mar del Plata and today there are 14 flights maintained throughout the year.
"Passenger numbers went from 47,000 in the first two months of 2015 to 122,000 in the first two months of 2018. This is a 260% increase. Many people were afraid that we had some kind of Machiavellian plan and that the airline would disappear. Instead, not only did the airline not disappear, it doubled the number of passengers flown, "he said.
The minister pointed out that this is because the company scheduled new routes with Tucumán, Mendoza, Córdoba and that has made Mar del Plata an option for people from many regions of the country.