Panamá based Copa Airlines, a subsidiary of Copa Holdings, S.A., officially began operations of its new route to the city of Paramaribo, in the Republic of Suriname, being the only airline that will connect this destination with 80 other destinations and 32 countries in North, Central and South America, and the Caribbean, through Tocumen International Airport in Panama City.
“The flight to the city of Paramaribo represents a step to continue strengthening our operations in Latin America. Connecting this country for the first time with the rest of the continent will promote greater investment opportunities for economic and tourism development between Suriname and the countries where Copa Airlines operates”, said Pedro Heilbron, CEO of Copa Airlines.
93% of Suriname’s territory is a forest rich in flora and fauna, an ideal place for the development of ecotourism. This destination is renowned for its coffee, sugarcane and banana plantations, which are part of an experience that integrates different culinary and cultural influences from Indonesia, India, China, Africa and Europe. On the other hand, it is set apart by its emblematic 17th century Dutch architecture, which was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2002.
“Copa Airlines is an important gateway for the development of our economy. Connectivity is a priority for the growth of the commercial and tourism sector of nations, and I am sure that both, the public and private sectors of Suriname will benefit from the network of destinations that we will have from today”, commented Stephen Tsang, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism of Suriname.
Copa Airlines flight CM318 will operate initially with two weekly frequencies on Wednesdays and Saturdays, departing at 9:17 a.m. from Panama (local time) and arriving at Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport at 3:45 p.m. (local time). The return flight, CM319, will depart on the same day from Paramaribo at 5:52 p.m., arriving in Panama at 8:28 p.m. (local time).
“We are very happy to have an airline like Copa Airlines to get closer to the region. Connectivity is key to improving efficient transport, mainly boosting exports, investment and tourism in Suriname. This network of routes will be of great benefit not only for the transport sector but also for all sectors of our country.”, added Vijay Chotkan, Minister of Public Works, Transport and Communications of Suriname.
The inaugural flight ceremony, held at Tocumen International Airport in Panama City, was attended by the directors and staff of the Airline, as well as various authorities including: Stephen Tsang, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism of Suriname; Vijay Chotkan, Minister of Public Works, Transport and Communications of Suriname; and the new Minister of Tourism of Panama, Iván Eskildsen.
Copa Airlines currently operates an average of 350 daily flights through Tocumen International Airport in Panama City, and from where it connects 81 cities from 33 countries in North, Central and South America, and the Caribbean.