?Vice-president of marketing for Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Randy Tinseth, has dodged questions about the role of the airline manufacturer in the Government's acquisition of a private jet. Tinseth visited T&T for the first time last month. He spent several hours in Port-of-Spain before attending to business in Latin America. No other Caribbean island was included in his business schedule. "I usually do not give the details of whom we are meeting with," Tinseth said. "Let us put it this way, in my trips, in general, I always try to reach out to airlines and when appropriate, government agencies."
Tinseth's local business engagement followed statements from Minister in Ministry of Finance Mariano Browne, who said that the Government was waiting for the executive jet market "to look good again" before purchasing a private jet. "Every year I try to touch each and every one of our major markets," he said. "I was fortunate to be able to fit in my trip to Latin America and the Caribbean, a trip to Port-of-Spain. So it was a great pleasure to be here." Last year, the Government made US$54 million available to Caribbean Airlines for the purchase of an executive jet from Bombardier but the transaction was aborted after Bombardier refused to include an anti-corruption clause in the agreement.
When asked whether officials at Boeing were soliciting the Government to purchase one of its private business jets, such as the Boeing 757, Tinseth redirected the question to government officials. "You know, I am not going to talk about any of our specific negotiations or discussions what we have with our customers," he said. "When we look at Latin America, we expect to lead the economic recovery along with what we are seeing in Asia for the airline industry. "We are not going to talk about the specifics of our business deals. We will let our customers talk for themselves."