Seychelles,02.01.18 (ETN)- Not everything that shines is made out of gold – and Etihad knows this. After writing off an enormous amount of bad investments in Alitalia and airberlin, the United Arab Emirates owners of Etihad are playing a different game – or did they play this game all along?

The former Minister of Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports, and Marine of Seychelles, Alain St.Ange warned in his weekly bulletin that 2017 has ended with many alarming announcements of decisions and actions taken in the name of the people of Seychelles.

According to St. Ange, alarming is the announcement by Etihad Airlines that the 40% shares they own in Air Seychelles have now been transferred to an Etihad Holding Company. At face value, it seems that it is but an innocent company share transfer, but in reality, when all the dust has settled, we will realize that Air Seychelles was previously part of a major Airline, but now it is just a mere investment by its holding company.

This announcement came just after an alleged lone call in the Seychelles National Assembly for Etihad Airlines to pack its bag and get out. A further announcement swiftly followed regarding the looming redundancy of staff at Air Seychelles. Many Seychellois families will suffer when the redundancies start in earnest, and its impact on tourism will be felt for years to come.

Many have been commenting on the Seychelles Airline’s recent announcement that they will be taking to the skies in 2018. Seychelles Airlines is a different airline in Seychelles with no connection to Air Seychelles.

Alain continued to state: “It is recalled that prominent politicians are involved in this private venture. In our economic climate, would it not be wiser to merge efforts and resources to establish a single airline for the country where those with means are invited to participate in the consolidation of the country’s airline? ”

The image of the country in the global arena is more vulnerable than ever. Domestic issues continue to impact the idyllic dream paradise we all say we offer. We have received a report of a young unsuspecting German tourist who booked an available bedroom in somebody’s private home, and soon felt compelled to call a tourism establishment owner to come pick her up because she was frightened for her security.

The cost of electricity is going up immediately, and a further revision is expected to again hike the price in March for both the public and the commercial sector. The Seychelles Public Transport Corporation (SPTC) is also increasing its fares over and above the many other increases that were announced in the Budget 2018 presentation that was duly approved by the National Assembly of the People.