GEORGETOWN, Guyana, April 24, 2019 (CMC) – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has criticised aviation authorities, in Guyana, over the inconvenience being suffered by passengers, because of the manual payment of airport fees, during departures and arrivals.
In a statement, IATA, which is the trade association for the world’s airlines — representing an estimated 290 airlines — said it was seeking immediate dialogue with the management of the Cheddi Jagan International Airport Corporation (CJIA) and the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, on the implementation process, related to the increase in the government-mandated airport security fee and the introduction of a new passenger service.
It said the continued refusal by the airport operator to cooperate with IATA, on both the proper calculation and implementation of such fees and charges, has now led to a situation, where airlines have been forced to manually collect the additional amounts, from both arriving and departing passengers.
“It is completely unacceptable that passengers are being inconvenienced, in such a manner. This is a direct result of the airport’s management’s refusal, to engage with IATA, on a process, which is standard practice, across the globe. As a consequence, our member airlines have, unfortunately, no choice other than to manually collect the additional fees and charges,” the statement quoted Peter Cerda, IATA’s Regional Vice President for the Americas, as saying.
He said there are worldwide standards in place, enabling airlines to collect government-imposed fees, service charges and taxes, as part of an airline ticket, and those fees and charges are then transferred to the respective governments.
IATA said it would also be seeking clarity from the airport operator, on how the fees and charges have been calculated, noting that the international standards, set out by the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Document 9082, were not followed.
“We understand that airports need to recover their investment costs. This must, however, be achieved, through a collaborative and transparent process, ensuring that imposed fees are proportionate to the planned expenditure.
“This can best be achieved, in partnership, between all sectors of the aviation industry, thereby unlocking the true potential of a country and its people. As such, we urgently call on the management of Cheddi Jagan International Airport to engage into the requested dialogue, so passengers are no longer inconvenienced, and member airlines can return to their normal business. This will ensure the sustainability of the aviation sector in Guyana, and facilitate the growth of tourism and trade, thereby contributing to a vibrant and healthy economy,” Cerda added.
Since the implementation of the US$17 exit and entry fees, airlines and passengers have complained about the inconvenience, of having to join long lines to pay the fees.