Vietnam taxi service proposed

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Vietnamese company Security Equipment Supplies (SES) is talking to potential partners, including Vietnam Airlines subsidiary Vietnam Air Services (VASCO), with a view to forming an air-taxi service in Vietnam using Cessna aircraft.

SES's Salom Saphyr says VASCO is one of three potential partners with which it has held talks on the proposed service. "We plan to operate one or more executive jets and one or two Cessna 208 Caravans," says Saphyr, citing the superlight Citation XLS as a possibility.

The business jet would primarily be used for corporate charters and the Caravan single-engined turboprops for tourism charters and special mission operations. There are no business jets registered in Vietnam, says Saphyr, "so now is the right time" to develop business aviation in the country.

Cessna says it has no involvement in the venture.

From 1992-4 SES and VASCO operated an air-taxi service in Vietnam using a Britten Norman Islander and a Cessna 185. The partnership ended when VASCO acquired a Beechcraft Super King Air.