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Regional Government Has No Stake in SATA Airline

The President of the Government of Madeira, Miguel Albuquerque, said today that the regional executive does not intend to purchase shares in the Azorean airline SATA, contrary to what was said by the President of the Hotel Association of Portugal (AHP), Bernardo Trindade.

“We are not going to become shareholders in SATA,” said the Madeiran ruler. “I don’t think there’s any interest for governments to get into airlines.”

When tackled by reporters about the subject of SATA, Miguel Albuquerque made his position clear:

“The government does not have to meddle in the capital or the administration of aviation companies.  We work well with SATA, which operates a direct link between Madeira and New York.  What happened to TAP is a good example of why governments should not be involved in airline administration and funding, as this always means more burdens on the taxpayer’s pocket.”

He went on to say that the problems with TAP are caused by its inability to compete with other airlines who operate differently, and that the company is hopelessly privatised.”

In statements, first to JM and later to Antena 1/Azores, Bernardo Trindade, who was Secretary of State for Tourism, defended the Autonomous Region of Madeira’s need to become a major SATA shareholder.

“Personally, as an entrepreneur, I understand that today the conditions are created so that in a capital opening can have the Autonomous Region of Madeira, together with the Autonomous Region of the Azores, in the creation, through a more financially muscled company, a truly international brand.”

Reacting to Bernardo Trindade’s statement, the President of the Regional Government of the Azores (PSD/CDS-PP/PPM), José Manuel Bolieiro, also indicated that they also have no interest in becoming shareholders.

Samantha Gannon

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