In 2016, Curacao’s local airline, Insel Air, ran into financial difficulties due to non-payment from Venezuela, a previously lucrative market. Then in 2017, some of its aircraft were grounded for technical reasons. Today, the airline is flying again but under much reduced circumstances.
The airline needs working capital. On paper it has a fleet of five aircraft, Fokker F-50s and F-70s. In actual fact, only two F-50s are operational. If there are any maintenance problems then there are no back-ups and its plans would be thrown into disarray.
The airline is putting together a financial loan package and has approached several banks. Also, it has asked its island government to guarantee a loan of U.S.$3.6 million. Steven Martina, the Minister for Economic Development confirmed that consultations had taken place and are “in a final phase”. He could not be drawn further.