Premier Andrew Fahie said on March 25 government has been working with several airlines in recent weeks to determine whether they would be able to use the current landing strip at Beef Island for direct flights to the United States until the planned airport expansion is carried out. (File photo: TODD VANSICKLE)

Talks about providing direct flights between the Virgin Islands and mainland United States are ongoing and may produce results soon, Premier Andrew Fahie announced on March 25.

“While we are working on the airport expansion, the feedback has been positive from all airlines contacted,” Mr. Fahie said during a press conference.

He added that government has been working with those airlines over the past few weeks to determine whether they would be able to utilise the current landing strip at the Beef Island airport until the planned expansion is completed.

“One particular airline is presently expanding its fleet and is optimistic about starting this service by the end of the third quarter of this year,” he said, without naming the airline.

Another airline contacted the VI about possibly offering direct flights to Miami three days a week, according to the premier.

He added that technical discussions are under way to see if the company’s new aircraft could make the flight.

The premier announced in June 2020 that his government had restarted the process for expanding the runway at Beef Island, and he said on March 25 that updates on work there and at the Virgin Gorda airport are pending.