Air Canada President and Chief Executive Officer, R. Lamar Durrett, told shareholders today at the company`s annual general meeting in Calgary that the runaway growth in airport and air navigation costs must stop for airlines and travellers in Canada.
“Canada`s airlines are not in a financial position to absorb massive and unreasonable costs. Canada`s airlines, customers and shareholders simply cannot afford the increases levied year after year. I`m talking about $132 million in new fees in 1998 alone for Air Canada,” said R. Lamar Durrett.
“This spiralling cost is short-circuiting the ability of Canada`s airlines to operate profitably and short-changing shareholders. We`re not asking for a free ride, but we are asking for a fair ride. We want to see a reasonable level of fees in line with what Canada`s airlines and customers can reasonably sustain.
“Most of all we must be brought into the decision-making process by airport authorities and Navcan. Since 1997, airport and air navigation fees have doubled. It`s got to stop. And we will be taking that message to every airport authority and every level of government in 1999.”