The US Department of Transportation (DOT) confirmed the issuance of foreign certificate authority to Eastern Airlines (EAL, Miami International), allowing the carrier to launch flights from New York JFK to Georgetown Cheddi Jagan, Guyana.

The DOT had previously issued the authority through an oral action in October 2018.

The carrier was originally conditionally approved to launch the route in August 2015. However, at that time, Eastern Airlines failed to produce updated fitness information. As a result, the foreign certificate authority never became effective. Over the course of 2018, Eastern Airlines gradually provided all the requisite information.

"Our fitness findings here are based on Eastern operating one aircraft in foreign scheduled air transportation. Should Eastern operate additional aircraft in scheduled air transportation, it is not clear that our fitness findings would remain the same. Therefore, we will require Eastern to notify the Department 45-days prior to implementing any expansion that would result in the operation of more than ten total aircraft or more than one aircraft in scheduled air transportation," the DOT said.

Executive Vice President (Strategy) John Woolley previously told ch-aviation that Eastern Airlines was targeting mid-2019 for the launch of scheduled flights to Guyana.

The carrier has also recently applied to the DOT for the reactivation of its scheduled interstate certificate in order to launch direct flights from New York JFK to Anchorage Ted Stevens. The sector would be operated as a part of its New York-Jinan service with full commercial rights on the domestic leg.

"Eastern is concurrently applying for JFK-Anchorage-Jinan route authority and seeks authorization to utilize an additional aircraft for this scheduled service... Importantly, the overall JFK-ANC-TNA-ANC-JFK route will be in the public interest as it will provide passengers, both domestic and foreign, with access to a new Chinese destination in Zone 2 under the US-China bilateral. Currently, no US carrier operates non-stop to any Zone 2 city," the carrier wrote in its application filed in February 2019.

Eastern Airlines currently operates one B767-200, three B767-200(ER)s, and five B767-300(ER)s on ACMI and charter services.