While Air Canada flights to Venezuela remain suspended, a spokesperson said the company would consider resuming its services to the South American country if certain conditions are met, including the repayment of outstanding funds from ticket sales.
According to several reports, Andres Izarra, Venezuela’s Minister of Tourism, was recently quoted as stating that Air Canada had informed Venezuelan officials of plans to resume flights, suspended earlier this year in the wake of civil unrest in the country. The minister’s statement was denied by Air Canada.
Prior to March 19, Air Canada operated three weekly return flights between Toronto and Caracas.
According to Air Canada spokesperson Peter Fitzpatrick, the carrier would consider resuming services to Venezuela once “circumstances permit and the repatriation of funds is addressed,” referring to Air Canada’s share of the outstanding money from airline ticket sales held by the Venezuelan government.
That money, which the International Air Transport Association said is being held by Venezuela in “breach of international treaties,” is estimated to be approximately $4.1 billion owed worldwide. The IATA said that Venezuela has permitted the repatriation of only $424 million shared among a number of airlines.