The CGi fully supports the decision by Aurigny to restart flights to Jersey and establish a new, direct service with Southampton.
Both routes have historically shown to be very important links for Guernsey and also underserved for several years so this is excellent news for the inbound visitor market, business travellers and Islanders.
This also demonstrates that the Open Skies licensing regime recently adopted by the Committee for Economic Development is having a positive effect on the availability of connections with the Island.
THE Confederation of Guernsey Industry has welcomed the news that the London Heathrow link is to be re-established which will make international connections more convenient for some travellers.
Whilst the CGi applauds the President of the Committee for Economic Development's efforts in making this initiative a reality, the test will be the long term sustainability of the service, ongoing requirements for subsidies and the impact on Aurigny given the inevitable loss of some passengers from the Gatwick route.
The CGi’s main concern is that without real growth in passenger numbers the net result may be a considerable increase in public subsidy to support Flybe on Guernsey to Heathrow and an increase in the funding provided to Aurigny.
Clive McMinn, CGi Chairman, said,’ This is not a perfect solution for improving international connectivity; it has a number of risks associated with it but at least there is the will to take a risk and try something.’
‘With current uncertainty over FlyBe’s future, the CGI hopes that the States has negotiated an option on the slot to continue to operate the route should FlyBe choose not to be unable fulfil the service beyond this summer. The future sustainability of the services could be assured if the benefits can be supported by evidence that the trial period will generate,’ Mr McMinn added.