President of TAP's Board of Directors admitted to having been "very surprised" with the decision of the Commercial Association of Porto (ACP).
Miguel Frasquilho, president of TAP’s Board of Directors, said today that he was “very surprised” by the injunction of the Commercial Association of Porto to stop state aid to the airline.
He was speaking before the members of the parliamentary committee on Economy, Innovation, Public Works and Housing, when he admitted to having been “very surprised” with the decision of the Commercial Association of Porto (ACP), after having had meetings that he considered “productive” and “constructive” with associations in the north of the country.
“In August, the proportion of destinations served from Porto will be very similar to the one it had in Lisbon before Covid-19,” Miguel Frasquilho said.
Frasquilho also said that meetings have taken place with associations in the Algarve region and will also be held with those in the autonomous region of Madeira, on Friday, and also the Azores.
According to Frasquilho, TAP’s Board of Directors believes that the company’s recovery programme should also contribute to “a more harmonious and balanced recovery in the country”.
“An initial decision was taken by the Executive Committee [on the flight recovery plan], the Board of Directors warned on some occasions of what we thought was not appropriate. […] We can express our opinion, we can suggest, the final decision is not the Board’s”, he added.
The ACP has filed an injunction to try to avoid the injection of 1.2 billion euros from the state into the airline.
The legal grounds for the injunction “are based on three essential arguments,” according to a communiqué from the association sent to Lusa on Saturday.
“The disrespect for the principle of territorial balance, since TAP’s flight plan concentrates 96% of international flights at Lisbon airport, marginalizing Porto airport and ignoring the others”, and “the defence of the principle of transparency, since, if TAP is a private company, it must live off its own resources”, are two of the arguments.
The third is the “promotion of the principle of rationality”.
“The promotion of the principle of rationality, because if TAP becomes a state company, or the state puts huge funds into it – which is known to be impossible to return because TAP, which has negative equity capital of €600 million, simply doesn’t have the capacity to do so – and charges active taxpayers and future generations, then this national contribution should be matched by a service with a national dimension,” the trade association argues.