The airBaltic CEO has been criticized for plans to open a competing airline in Lithuania. (photo: airBaltic)
RIGA -- The Latvian government has said that airBaltic president Bertolt Flick will not be allowed to continue in his post if he follows through with plans to launch a new airline service in Lithuania.
Flick announced earlier that his company, Baltijas Aviacijas Sistemas, was planning on launching a new airline based in Lithuania. The Latvian administration, however, has said that starting a competing airline would conflict with his duties as head of the national airline.
"Mr.Flick will have to chose where to continue his job," Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis said in a press conference in Riga.
Latvian Transport and Communication Minister Kaspars Gerhards also criticized the move.
"This all is very strange. I find it difficult to understand Mr.Flick‘s activities in Lithuania. Recently, the Latvian government invested 14 million Lats into airBaltic. We are in active discussions how to enhance the effectiveness of the company and when we see Flick‘s lobbyism for his own interests, many questions arise," Gerhards was quoted as saying by BNS.
BAS, for it's part, has said that the new airline would not be a direct competitor to airBaltic, saying the two companies have different business plans and will serve different markets.