Díli, East Timor, 27 Nov – East Timor’s first airline, Timor Air began operating Wednesday with a fleet made up of a leased 94-seat Embraer aircraft and plans to fly to Australia and Indonesia.
The company’s founder and main shareholder, Jeremias de Sousa, na Australian businessman of East Timorese origin, said that he planned to increase the fleet to four or five aircraft over the next five years.
Saying that the company would present a “fair and reasonable” price list, de Sousa noted that he planned to start flights on 2 February, 2009 with daily routes between Darwin and Dili and Denpasar in competition with Air North and Indonesia’s Merpati.
Saying the the East Timor government had received a 10 percent stake in the airline for free, de Sousa noted that the Embrarer aeroplane would be leased for a 12 month period from Brisbane SkyAirWorld, which will provide pilots and crew.
Later, de Sousa said, Timor Air would acquire its own Embraer which would also be flown by SkyAirWorld pilots and crew. (macauhub)