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China's 9 Air leasing two B737s from GECAS

9 Air (AQ, Guangzhou) has leased a pair of B737-800s from GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS). The aircraft - B-6990 (msn 41259) and B-6989 (msn 38041) - were formerly in service with India's Spicejet (SG, Delhi Int'l).

A further two of the type - msn 41260 and 41261 - are currently undergoing pre-delivery maintenance checks at Singapore Seletar ahead of their delivery to the Chinese budget carrier.

Once all aircraft are in service, the Juneyao Airlines (HO, Shanghai Hongqiao) subsidiary ...

China Eastern, Qantas in bid to secure joint-venture nod

China Eastern Airlines (MU, Shanghai Hongqiao) has offered various concessions to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) in a bid to secure a five-year authorization for its planned joint-venture with Qantas (QF, Sydney Kingford Smith) for flights between Australia and China.

The ACCC warned in March that it may deny granting the venture regulatory approval over concerns the tie-up could harm competition on the Sydney Kingford Smith-Shanghai Pudong route. Aside from ...

American Airlines announces new $2bn share buyback drive

The Board of Directors at the American Airlines Group has authorized another round of share buy-backs with USD2 billion in stock to be reacquired by December 31, 2016.

The move adds to a similar USD2 billion initiative launched in January of this year and which has so far seen USD943 million worth of shares being bought back through the first half of the year.

AAG announced its highest quarterly earnings ever, posting a 2Q profit of USD1.7 billion.

Other US carriers to offer similar ...

Royal Air Maroc leasing a Jordanian A320

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Singapore Airlines relinquishes seven A350 production slots

Singapore Airlines (SQ, Singapore Changi) says it has relinquished seven A350-900 production slots at the request of Airbus Industrie (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac). The move now leaves the Singaporean carrier with sixty-three firm orders for the type. An additional twenty order options, exchangeable for the larger A350-1000, are still intact.

"It will not materially affect SIA’s fleet renewal or growth plans, as adjustments have been made to bring forward deliveries of other A350-900 aircraft on ...

Nigeria's Dana Air eyes maiden regional flights

Dana Air (9J, Lagos) is planning to commence international services with flights to Accra, Ghana. Airline officials were recently in the Ghanaian capital assisting the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GhCAA) in the validation of their Nigerian Air Operator Certificate (AOC).

Using a fleet of five MD-83s and one MD-82, Dana Air currently operates exclusively within the confines of Nigeria connecting Abuja and Port Harcourt Omagwa with its Lagos hub.

AirAsia to recapitalize Indonesian unit

Tony Fernandes, the founder and CEO of AirAsia Group, says his firm will recapitalize its Indonesia AirAsia (QZ, Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta) subsidiary ahead of a July 31 deadline to improve its overall financial standing.

The Indonesian Ministry of Transport (MOT) earlier this month gave thirteen local carriers - Indonesia AirAsia, Batik Air (part of the Lion Group), Cardigair, Transwisata Air, EastIndo, Survai Udara Penas, Air Pacific (Indonesia), Jhonlin Air Transport, ...

Air China aims to raise $1.9bn through share placement

Air China (CA, Beijing Capital) is the latest Chinese carrier to pursue funding through the private issuance of shares. In a filing to the Shanghai Stock Exchange, the Chinese national airline said it aims to raise up to CNY12 billion (USD1.931 billion) through the private placement of 994,200,497 new A-shares with not more than 10 Investors (including the China National Aviation Holding Company (CNAHC)).

The carrier will use CNY7.45 billion (USD1.199 billion) in the purchase of fifteen ...

VietJetAir adds maiden high-density A321

VietJetAir (VJ, Hanoi) has taken delivery of the world's first high-density A321-200 aircraft following a ferry flight routed Hamburg Finkenwerder-Almaty-Ho Chi Minh City on July 25.

VN-A660 (cn 6696) features 230 seats - ten more than the traditional configuration of 220 - and is the third A321-200 (sl) in service with the Vietnamese budget carrier.

“By welcoming this A321ceo with Sharklets into the VietJet family, we can meet our expansion plans,” Luu Duc Khanh, VietJet’s Managing ...

Congo Airways takes delivery of maiden aircraft

Congo Airways (Kinshasa N'Djili) has taken delivery of its maiden aircraft - 9Q-CLU (cn 3362) - an A320-200 formerly in service with Alitalia (AZ, Rome Fiumicino) as EI-DSM. Skyliner Aviation reports the aircraft was ferried from Dublin Int'l to Kinshasa N'Djili via Tangiers on Wednesday, July 29.

A second of the type is scheduled to arrive later next month.

The start-up is slated to commence commercial operations on Thursday, August 20 offering scheduled flights to eight local cities ...

China's Xiamen Airlines eyes Australia flights this winter

Xiamen Airlines (MF, Xiamen) is indeed planning to venture into the Oceania market later this year a filing with the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) has indicated.

The Xiamen-based carrier is seeking Beijing's authorization to begin daily return flights between Fuzhou and Sydney Kingford Smith using one of its six B787-8s.

Xiaman Airlines began intercontinental operations this week with the launch of direct Xiamen-Amsterdam flights on Sunday, July 26.

Spicejet in talks with Airbus, Boeing for 100+ jet order

Spicejet (SG, Delhi Int'l) is in talks with Airbus Industrie (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac) and Boeing (BOE, Chicago O'Hare) over a proposed order for more than 100 narrowbody jets Chairman Ajay Singh told Bloomberg news this week.

According to Singh, both the A320neo and the B737 MAX are being considered with a deal due by the end of its current financial year, which ends on March 31, 2016.

"We will bring in some investments at the time of the order," he said, "The order will depend on what ...

Delta to acquire 3.55% stake in China Eastern for $450mn

Delta Air Lines (DL, Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson) has announced it will acquire a 3.55% stake in China Eastern Airlines (MU, Shanghai Hongqiao) for USD450 million. As part of the acquisition, the US carrier will also be entitled to an observer seat on China Eastern's board of directors.

"The cooperation of the parties is based on a global vision and joint strategic blueprint," Shaoyong Liu, China Eastern CEO, said. "The parties will take advantage of their respective route networks, flight ...

EC takes France to court for failure to recover state-aid

The European Commission (EC) says it has referred France to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) for failing to recover almost EUR10 million in illegal state aid from Ryanair (FR, Dublin Int'l) and Transavia France (TO, Paris Orly) within the specified four month time frame.

In July 2014, the EC ruled that Ryanair, its subsidiary Airport Marketing Services (AMS), and Transavia had unfairly benefited from various contractual and marketing arrangements with the French airports of Pau, Nîmes, ...

Finnair signs A300 freighter sharing deal with IAG Cargo

Finnair Cargo, the wholly-owned freight subsidiary of Finnair (AY, Helsinki Vantaa), says it has signed a freighter-sharing agreement with IAG Cargo ahead of the launch of flights to London later this year.

The Finnish carrier said in a press release that it would use an A300-600(F) to launch a 2x weekly Helsinki Vantaa-London Luton service. London will effectively become Finnair third European freight hub after Helsinki and Brussels National. The flights will be operated by DHL subsidiary ...

KLM says not in talks to sell Martinair to the Russians

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (KL, Amsterdam) is not in talks with Russia's AirBridge Cargo concerning the sale of its Martinair (MP, Amsterdam) freight unit the Dutch carrier's President and Chief Executive Officer Pieter Elbers has said.

Last week, the Vice President of Marketing and Sales at AirBridge Cargo (RU, Ulyanovsk Vostochny), Robert van de Weg, told Dutch paper Nieuwsblad Transport that while his firm had pursued an acquisition eighteen months ago, the Air France-KLM board had ...

Guadeloupe's Air Antilles Express secures FACP, rights

Air Antilles Express (3S, Pointe à Pitre) has been granted an amended Foreign Air Carriers Permit (FACP) and route exemption by the US Department of Transportation (DOT).

Based in the French overseas region of Guadeloupe, the carrier may now offer scheduled and charter flights ferrying passengers, mail, and freight between the European Union and the United States and beyond. It is, however, restricted to using aircraft capable of carrying no more than sixty passengers and having a maximum ...

Air Vanuatu to lease one B737-800 from ALC

Air Vanuatu (NF, Port Vila) has signed a longterm lease contract with Air Lease Corporation (ALC) for one B737-800. The aircraft is sourced from ALC’s Boeing (BOE, Chicago O'Hare) order book and will deliver in January 2016.

The Ni-Vanuatu carrier uses its existing B737-800 on flights to Espiritu Santo locally and Auckland Int'l, Brisbane Int'l, and Sydney Kingford Smith regionally. It also operates a pair of ATR 72-500s and a trio of Y12Es the latter of which it intends to sell off later ...

FAA gives Thailand 65 days to improve aviation oversight

The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has given Thailand sixty-five days to improve the overall standard of safety in its aviation sector following a five-day long International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) earlier this month.

Thai Minister of Transport, Prajin Juntong, told a media briefing last week that the FAA audit involved visits to the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) as well Thai Airways International (TG, Bangkok Suvarnabhumi) and ...

CEIBA Intercontinental B777 seized in France over €70mn debt

A CEIBA Intercontinental (C2, Malabo) B777-200(LR) has been seized in France as part of a dispute between the Commercial Bank Guinea Ecuatorial (CBGE) and the government of Equatorial Guinea.

Jeune Afrique reports 3C-MAB (msn 60116) was seized on July 10 while undergoing VIP-fitment at Basle/Mulhouse/Freiburg airport in eastern France ahead of its delivery to Central Africa.

CBGE's dispute with Equatorial Guinea goes back to 2002 when the Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo regime refused to ...