(Bloomberg) -- Mexico’s government is debating whether to create an airline run by its military that would fly to commercial destinations, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Tuesday.
The ten-plane operation would service destinations that private airlines do not adequately service following the bankruptcy proceedings of Interjet and a reduction of flights by Grupo Aeromar, he said.
Since assuming the presidency in 2018, Lopez Obrador has roiled the nation’s aviation industry and expanded the civilian role of the military, placing it in charge of infrastructure projects ranging from airlines to train lines. He canceled the construction of a new Mexico City airport that was already underway, opting to instead convert a military airport well to the north of the capital’s metropolitan area to accommodate commercial flights.
“They’re doing the economic analysis to determine the viability” of the new airline, Lopez Obrador said at a press briefing. “It’s probable that next year the airline will be ready. There are a lot of places where you can’t go by plane because they’re not serviced by the existing airlines.”
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The company in charge of the airline would be Olmeca Maya Mexica, a military-run company that will also oversee a major train project and airports in Mexico City and Tulum, a beach destination that has gained prominence in recent years. Its responsibilities will include airports in Palenque and Chetumal, and other visitor hot-spots in southern Mexico.
The new airline would include the former presidential plane in its fleet. That plane was put up for sale by the government, but hasn’t found a buyer.
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