Tourism Minister doesn’t exclude partial privatisation of Air Malta

Tourism Minister Edward Zammit Lewis says Air Malta was ‘a strategic asset’ and government was committed to ensure the airline becomes commercially viable by 2016

Tourism Minister Edward Zammit Lewis has not excluded the partial privatisation of Air Malta, reiterating that the government was committed to see the airline “commercially viable by 2016”.

The time allocated for parliamentary questions this evening was taken up by questions related to Air Malta, with the minister adamantly reiterating that the airline was undergoing a restructuring process and urging the Opposition to be “careful” in its statements “so as not to cause any harm to airlines and workers”.

Zammit Lewis said that, in due time, the Opposition will be consulted, quipping that past parliamentary replies fielded by the then PN administration always ended with “the information requested is commercially sensitive and cannot be divulged”.

The tourism minister said it was not enough for the airline to focus on the restructuring process but Air Malta should have a long-term plan.

“We are committed to see through our electoral pledge and ensure that Air Malta remains our national airline and an integral part of our tourism sector,” Zammit Lewis said, adding that Air Malta should “expand in a regional context”.

The comments come after media reports that Air Malta was after a strategic alliance with an international airline and discussions were underway with Turkish Airlines.

 

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