Published On: Mon, Jan 30th, 2017

Bag full of holes

Inselair MD80 jetsIn Curacao we have the curious situation where the Government has announced to hold a press conference about a private company: Inselair. The situation with this privately owned company is precarious. Apparently, both the Curacao and Aruba civil aviation authorities have decided to ground all the MD-8x and Fokker 70 aircrafts as a result of compliants of pilots refusing to operate the aircrafts due to maintenance issues.

Despite the fact that all the international flights supposedly have been cancelled, Curacao is not really in a isolated position. Curacao is being served on a daily basis by airlines such as KLM and TUI to Europe, American Airlines to the USA and Avianca to South America.

So the role the government of Curacao is playing is a curious one. Noble, but curious nonetheless. The motivation for their involvement in this private company, and the millions they have injected into it, is to safeguard the loss of taxable turnover, tourism traffic to the island and connectivity to the rest of the world. The intention is understandable, but clearly the wrong message is being sent by financially injection taxpayers hard-earned monies into a bleeding enterprise, a privately owned company where the management, shareholders and investors took a calculated risk to invest and operate it for financial gain and profit. That did not work out. So what? Is the government going to inject money into every bleeding company on the island now?

Yes, the ones directly affected by a possible demise of the airline company are the workers. However, many in the airline industry were negatively impacted by failures and bankruptcies in the Curacao airline industry and in the aviation sector in the past, but their lives continued and life will go on for the workers of Inselair as well. Throwing public funds down the drain by assuming ownership of a practically defunct airline company and planning press conferences to explain what is going on, though incredible and inexplicable for many in the private and business sector, is nothing more than accepting responsibility and ownership for a water bag full of holes.