ATHENS - Greco-Canadian seaplane operator AirSea Lines has won a contract from the Greek government to operate flights to the Cyclades islands and the northern Aegean, the government said on Thursday.

The flights from Lavrion, south of Athens, will begin as soon as the necessary permits and other formalities have been organised, the government said in a statement. There will be up to three flights per day.

AirSea Lines began operating in September 2004 in the Ionian region, with scheduled flights between the islands of Corfu and Paxoi, and from July 2005 from Corfu to Ioannina in mainland Greece.

It plans a widening of its operations in the Ionian Sea, the picturesque region west of mainland Greece home to popular tourist islands such as Zakynthos, Kefallonia and Ithaca.

The firm aims to become the leading seaplane operator in Greece and ultimately the rest of Europe, according to its website.

09/21/2006 17:21 GMT

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