Officials of American Airlines (AA) have pledged not to end their 38-year relationship with Barbados by pulling flights, despite ongoing merger discussions between the airline and US Airways.

Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Richard Sealy, recently gave this assurance, during an interview with the Barbados Government Information Service, following meetings with officials in Miami.

He said the airline???s management had replaced the 757 aircraft with a 737 carrier on the JFK service from New York – a move that is intended to ensure the viability of the service to Barbados.

???We are assured, that inspite of merger discussions with US Airways, that the Kennedy flight would continue and I think that is a good thing from more than the perspective of tourism. We have a huge diaspora in New York, and summer is the time of year when people will want to come home to visit or participate in the Crop Over festival,??? Mr. Sealy added.

The Tourism Minister also revealed that discussions are being held on the resumption of flights out of the south western section of the United States in the future, stating that this would be based on the outcome of merger discussions.

???The Dallas flight had worked well for us. Not only from the point of view of getting the business out there, but as a means of taking the pressure off of the two Miami flights.

So, AA has assured us that they will not pull any flights without discussing it with us,??? he added.??

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