Sharp still in the air
THE future of Sharp Airlines Melbourne-Warrnambool-Portland service has been guaranteed for at least the next six months after it received a vital support package from state and local governments.
Without the support package Sharp would have flown its final service today.
The Victorian Government, as well as the Glenelg Shire and Warrnambool City councils, have provided a lifeline to the company to keep flights continuing until July.
Sharp Airlines managing director and chief pilot Malcolm Sharp said the company is facing a multifaceted dilemma.
“We have a complex business; Sharp Airlines employs 90 people, who operate in five states with 250 services a week,” Mr Sharp said.
“This includes 22 services between Portland and Melbourne, as well as flight as far north as Coffs Harbour in New South Wales, mining sites in central South Australia and across the Bass Strait.”
Mr Sharp welcomed the combined governments’ support for its service operating.
“I wouldn’t call it a bailout; it’s a small supporting package to help us through a challenging period,” Mr Sharp said.