For the first time in three decades, Tropic Air has a new CEO. He is Max Greif, son of founder John Greif. He's been working abroad in the US airline industry for the past few years, and when Steve Schulte decided - after 30 years - to retire in January of this year, the younger Greif swooped in to take up his father's mantle.

And while Tropic is a profitable company with a well oiled operation, taking over one of the country's largest national enterprises isn't easy - especially when you're coming in from the outside. We flew to Trop Air's headquarters in San Pedro today to talk to Max Greif about the challenges he faces, and the opportunities he sees:

Greif was previously the Senior Principal of Strategic Development at United Airlines.

We also asked Greif about the post-COVID performance of Tropic Air. During the pandemic, the company "took a lik", with its revenue flatlining and its operations reduced to the bar minimum, along with scores of employees laid off.

So, how has this major tourism enterprise been doing since the lifting of pandemic restrictions and the resumption of all tourist services? We asked Greif:

Max Greif, CEO, Tropic Air
"Our revenue went down to less that 5% of what it normally would have been. The company took a tremendous hit, but I would say most importantly the employees of this company took a tremendous hit and they've bear a lot of the responsibility of ensuring our recovery. Fortunately, tourism has rebounded. We're not at full levels compare to where we was in 2019, but we're close to it and going forward we are very optimistic about the level of demand that we see going forward."

"Covid is over. We've gone through the war time, now its peace time and we're looking forward to the tremendous amount of opportunities that exists for Tropic going forward and Belize as a whole."

Tomorrow you can hear Greif's comments on the still live proposal to open a major airport on northern Ambergris Caye, plus you'll hear what he thinks of his company's rivals at Maya Island Air.

Channel 7