On May 26, Colombia’s aeronautical agency will begin a new public hearing for companies to present their requests for operator certificates, new routes and frequencies, among other requirements. Among the interested parties, Avianca requested the return of its operations to Caracas (CCS), Venezuela.

According to the document, the company plans to connect Bogota’s El Dorado International Airport (BOG) with the Venezuelan capital with up to one daily flight in Airbus A319, A320 and A320neo aircraft, with the right to 3rd and 4th freedom of the air.

The announcement carries historical weight, given that Avianca operated for more than 60 years in Venezuela until 2017 when it left the country (along with several other airlines) citing operational safety concerns.

Avianca made its last flight to Maiquetía on July 27, 2017. Then, it operated a daily service from Lima (LIM), Peru and Bogota (BOG), Colombia.

Both countries are united by strong cultural, ethnic, and family ties. It is estimated that more than 1,842,390 Venezuelan citizens live in Colombia and more than 300,000 Colombians live in Venezuela.

It was one of the markets in South America with the largest supply of flights prior to the diplomatic crisis between the two countries. According to the intelligence platform Cirium, until 2017 there were up to 17 daily flights connecting Colombian and Venezuelan cities.

Prior to the pandemic, in March 2020, LASER Airlines, Avior and Wingo offered a total of 34 weekly flights between Caracas and Bogota.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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