Regional airline SA Airlink has assured its customers that it is operating under a valid scheduled air service licence and that there is no threat of disruption to its services.

This follows a Business Day report on Monday about concerns raised by the Airlines Association of Southern Africa — representing at least 19 airlines in the region — about the lack of progress made in dealing with a licence application that has been lodged by Airlink.

Airlink CEO Rodger Foster said it was not true that the airline could be operating without a licence by the end of September. The airline had a valid scheduled air service licence.

“Airlink has applied to the Air Services Licensing Council for an amendment to its charter licence in order to offer and operate a particular type of aircraft on an ad-hoc charter basis. It is the processing and approval of this application that remains in limbo at the Air Services Licensing Council, despite having been gazetted in June for adjudication,” he said.

“As a result, we are not yet able to offer our new aircraft for ad-hoc charters but until our licence amendment has been approved, we continue to service our charter customers with some of our smaller aircraft,” Foster said.

Airlines Association of Southern Africa CEO Chris Zweigenthal had expressed concern in a letter to Transport Minister Joe Maswanganyi about the council’s delay in processing Airlink’s application.

Zweigenthal urged the licensing council to deal with the backlog in applications.

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