Former prime minister of Barbados, Owen Seymour Arthur, has been announced as the next Chairman of the Board of Directors for the regional airline, LIAT. Arthur will replace Barbadian Dr Jean Holder who retired last December.
His chairmanship is among several changes being made to LIAT, according to Prime Minister Gaston Browne, who said other changes would include the implementation of a proper reservations system and employee-hiring control.
“I don’t think there could be any better candidate,” Browne said, recounting how Arthur had invested in the “survivability” of the airline during his tenure as prime minister of Barbados. He said now that LIAT is at a crossroad again, he thinks Arthur is “the right person to help to lead LIAT out of its difficulties”.
Arthur was the longest serving Barbadian Prime Minister, in office from September 6th, 1994 to January 20th, 1999; January 20th, 1999 to May 21st, 2003; and from May 21st, 2003 to January 15th, 2008.
The announcement came a few weeks after Browne said that he met with the head of LIAT’s largest shareholder government, Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley and the chairman of LIAT’s shareholder governments, Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines, Dr Ralph Gonsalves to reach a consensus on the way forward for the failing airline.
As for addressing other matters such as the cost of travel, Browne explained that while there may be room for a reduction in airport taxes, it must take place incrementally.