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American Airlines Group on track for Single Operating Certificate

American Airlines (AA, Dallas/Fort Worth) parent, the American Airlines Group, says it expects to secure a consolidated Air Operator Certificate covering both American Airlines and US Airways (US, Phoenix Sky Harbor) early next month.

“Since the merger closed, we’ve been working steadily towards a Single Operating Certificate, or SOC," an internal staff memo seen by the Dallas Morning News said. "On April 8 we expect to receive our SOC from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)."

The ...

Croatia Airlines eyes leases for six 100-seater aircraft

Croatia Airlines (OU, Zagreb) will lease in six new aircraft as it pushes ahead with its fleet renewal plans. EX-YU Aviation News quotes CEO Krešimir Kučko as telling the Croatian news site Jutarnji that the renewal is part of management's medium-term strategy for the carrier.

"Our aim is to renew our fleet as soon as possible. We have given this serious consideration and could begin renewing our fleet this winter, with the addition of 100-seat jets," he said.

Last year, Kučko said the ...

Dakar to nationalize Senegal Airlines

Senegal Airlines (DN, Dakar) will be nationalized in a bid to stave off its imminent collapse the Senegalese government has announced. Amadou Hott, the CEO of the country's sovereign wealth fund, told Bloomberg news in an interview that a new holding company will be established with government converting the debt it holds to equity in the new entity. The airline, whose debt now stands at XOF45 billion (USD75 million), is owned by the Senegalese government (36%) and a consortium of local ...

Gol's shareholders vote to amend ownership restrictions

Gol Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes (G3, São Paulo Congonhas) shareholders have voted in favour of a restructuring of the carrier's overall ownership in an effort to improve the carrier's appeal to potential foreign investors.

In the wake of Brasilia's decision to increase the limit on foreign shareholdings in local airlines from 20% to 49% in November last year, Gol shareholders have now voted in favour of allowing non-voting shareholders to hold board seats in addition to a clause which ...

Norwegian Long Haul to set up bases in Paris, Barcelona

Norwegian Long Haul (DU, Oslo Gardermoen) has selected Paris Orly as its next longhaul base Tore Østby, the director of investor relations for parent Norwegian (DY, Oslo Gardermoen), has disclosed.

According to Danish aviation portal check-in.dk, Østby told a conference in Oslo last week that the budget carrier wanted to serve the Parisian airport which, despite its proximity to the French metropolis, lacked adequate long haul connectivity.

"Orly has no long haul flights because of noise ...

China's Hainan Airlines to order thirty B787-9s

Hainan Airlines (HU, Haikou) is planning to place an order with Boeing (BOE, Chicago O'Hare) for thirty B787-9s the carrier said in a disclosure to the Shanghai Stock Exchange. The order, valued at USD7.7 billion at list prices, should see the jets delivered through to 2021.

The Chinese carrier says it would use the additional widebody jets to accelerate its international expansion with plans to increase existing connectivity to Europe and the United States while rolling out new ...

Wizz Air to replace Ukrainian subsidiary with new Kiev base

Wizz Air (W6, Budapest) says it will wind up its Wizz Air Ukraine (WU, Kiev Zhulyany) subsidiary operations on April 20 in line with the ongoing restructuring of the Group's operations in Ukraine.

"Following the removal of two aircraft from Ukraine last year, further capacity refinement and restructuring of Wizz Air’s operations in Ukraine were needed due to the ongoing instability in Eastern Ukraine, the devaluation and volatility of the local currency and the impact of foreign exchange ...

Egyptair suspends Sana'a flights following Saudi-led air raids

EgyptAir (MS, Cairo Int'l) is the latest international carrier to indefinitely suspend its services to the Yemeni capital of Sana. As with Gulf Air (GF, Bahrain), which suspended its services yesterday, the Egyptians cite the country's deteriorating geopolitical landscape for the suspension.

On Thursday, March 26 Egypt joined Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) allies Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Sudan, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and Morocco in launching airstrikes against the ...

Congo Airways set to take delivery of first two aircraft shortly

Congo Airways (Kinshasa N'Djili) is slated to take delivery of its first two aircraft - reportedly an A320-200 and a Dash 8-400 - as it pushes ahead with certification and ultimately, launch plans.

Quoting local radio sources, the DR Congo Airline blog reports the Congolese government has appointed Claude Kirongozi as the carrier's managing director while his deputy will be appointed by Air France Consulting which is providing guidance in the project.

The airline's inaugural flight has ...

Air Moldova ends Embraer 120 operations

Tandem-Aero (TQ, Chisinau) has withdrawn its single EMB-120, ER-EMA already in February after its wet-lease contract with Air Moldova (9U, Chisinau) ended. Air Moldova so far had used the aircraft on flights from Chisinau to Adler/Sochi, Bucharest Otopeni and Kiev Borispol. The 24-year-old turboprop aircraft was stored after performing its last flight on behalf of Air Moldova on February 28.

Air Moldova itself has removed the three destinations from its network following the EMB-120 ...

Air Botswana wet-leasing a CemAir CRJ-100

Air Botswana (BP, Gaborone) is wet-leasing a CRJ-100 from South African ACMI/charter specialists CemAir (5Z, Johannesburg O.R. Tambo) ch-aviation has learned. ZS-CMD (cn 7141) is currently providing the Batswana national carrier with short-term additional capacity while its aircraft undergo mandatory maintenance.

Air Botswana operates three ATR42-500s, one ATR72-500, and two ARJ-85s on flights throughout the country as well as to neighbouring South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Zambia.

Zambia's Proflight to begin longterm CRJ-100 operations

Proflight Air Services (P0, Lusaka) will begin long-term CRJ-100 operations next month following a successful trial period with ZS-CMB (cn 7215), leased from South Africa's CemAir (5Z, Johannesburg O.R. Tambo), during the last quarter of last year.

The carrier said in a statement that the type would primarily be deployed on its Lusaka to Ndola and Solwezi routes. It will also be used to satisfy peak demand on flights to Livingstone and Mfuwe.

“Proflight Zambia has grown steadily but ...

Fastjet's Zimbabwean operation secures its Air Services Permit

Fastjet (FN, Dar-es-Salaam) interim chairman and Chief Executive Officer Ed Winter says the carrier's newest affiliate, Fastjet Zimbabwe, has secured its Air Services Permit (ASP) following approval from both the Zimbabwean Ministry of Transport and the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (CAAZ) for its proposed business plan, structuring, and choice of aircraft.

"We recognized the real potential in Zimbabwe some time ago and have been working with the authorities to build fastjet Zimbabwe, ...

germanwings leasing in metal as crews grieve for 4U9525

germanwings (4U, Cologne/Bonn) has been forced to ground some aircraft in its fleet as employees struggle to come to terms with the aftermath of the crash of A320-200 D-AIPX (cn 147) in the French Alps on Tuesday this week. Operating as flight 4U9525 from Barcelona El Prat to Dusseldorf, the accident killed all 144 passengers and 6 crew on-board.

Austrian Aviation Net says numerous airline crew are too grief stricken to operate their aircraft resulting in the chartering of additional ...

Denmark's Es-air to cease operations after just 4 weeks

ES-air (Esbjerg) has announced it will cease operations from March 29 onwards citing weak demand. The last flight to be operated will be JTG8 from Esbjerg to Copenhagen Kastrup that evening. The company says it will fully refund all outstanding bookings.

The virtual carrier, which started operations on March 2 with an ATR 72-500 chartered from Jet Time (JO, Copenhagen Kastrup), aimed to revive flights between the small city of Esbjerg, in Western Denmark, and the capital Copenhagen.

Though ...

Irish lessors drag Spicejet to court over $16mn in unpaid dues

Spicejet (SG, Delhi Int'l) is to head to court where it will take on five Irish lessors claiming over INR1 billion (USD16 million) in unpaid aircraft leases India's Economic Times has reported.

The firms - B&B Air Acquisition, Steddell Ltd, Torodell Ltd, Xavierdell Ltd and Virgodell Ltd - have petitioned the Madras High Court to have the carrier declared bankrupt before being liquidated in a bid to secure their monies.

All five state that while they last received basic leasing and MRO fees ...

Isle of Man's Citywing proposes Alderney flights

Citywing (V9, Isle of Man) has approached the parliament of the most northerly of the Channel Islands, Alderney, with plans to begin daily flights from Alderney to fellow Channel isles Guernsey and Jersey as well as Southampton on the British mainland and Cherbourg in France.

ITV reports that while the venture would register annual losses of around GBP624,000 (USD931,513), it would create additional employment for groundhandling crews stationed at the remote airfield. Currently, ...

Yemenia dismisses claims Saudis want backdated profit-sharing

Yemenia (IY, Sana) commercial director, Mohammed Al-Mekhlafi, has refuted claims his airline owes the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia a share in its profits backdated to 1978 when Yemenia was founded.

Yemenia was formed in 1977 as a 51/49 joint venture between the national carrier of the then Yemen Arab Republic (YAR - or North Yemen) - Yemen Airways (IY, Sana) - and SAUDIA - Saudi Arabian Airlines (SV, Jeddah) with an overall market capitalization of USD30 million (USD116 million in 2015 Dollars). ...

Philippine Airlines studying potential A340 replacements

Philippine Airlines (PR, Manila) president and Chief Operating Officer Jaime Bautista says his airline is studying the A350 and the B787 as potential replacements for its fleet of A340-300s.

Bautista told the Philippine Star newspaper in an interview this week that the airline would likely phase out its six A340s by 2020.

“We are in the process of preparing a long term fleet plan for PAL. What we have finalized is for domestic and regional only but for long haul, we have yet to finalize ...

Chinese start-up Longjiang Airlines to debut in December

Longjiang Airlines (Harbin) is set to make its debut in December this year China's WCARN reports. Owned by Harbin-based gold merchant and former vice president of Big White Bear Jet Co., Ltd, Liang Fuhua, the start-up is backed by CNY800 million (USD129 million) in initial capital.

Using an initial mixed fleet of thirteen MA-60s and about fifteen leased A320s and EMB-190s, Longjiang plans to cover Heilongjiang Province with flights to Daqing, Qiqihar, Mudanjiang, Jixi, Jiamusi, Heihe, ...

RwandAir delays resuming domestic flights to later in the year

RwandAir (WB, Kigali) has postponed its planned resumption of domestic flights to later in the year to allow for the completion of runway upgrade works in the south-western town of Kamembe. The Rwandan Civil Aviation Authority (RCAA) began the works in November last year and had envisaged their completion by March 31.

“Our flights to and from Kamembe may resume as early as July 2015 as soon as works on the runway are completed and we are advised that the airport is fully operational again,” ...

Air New Zealand sets December date for South American debut

Air New Zealand (NZ, Auckland Int'l) is planning to make its South American debut on December 1 of this year with a 3x weekly return flight between Auckland Int'l and Buenos Aires Ezeiza, Argentina. The flights are on-board B777-200(ER) aircraft.

Air New Zealand will enter into a code share agreement with Aerolineas Argentinas, subject to New Zealand and Argentine regulatory approvals, which will see Aerolineas Argentinas (AR, Buenos Aires Ezeiza) place its code on the route as well as on key ...

Turkey's Onur Air leasing a pair of Bulgarian A320s

Onur Air (8Q, Istanbul Atatürk) has begun leasing a pair of A320-200s from Bulgaria Air (FB, Sofia) Skyliner Aviation reports. The jets, LZ-FBC (cn 2540) and LZ-FBD (cn 2596), have already been deployed into service on flights from Istanbul Atatürk to various destinations throughout Turkey as well as to Amsterdam, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt Int'l, Lefkosa, Odessa, Paris CDG and Vienna.

The Turkish leisure carrier is an all-Airbus Industrie (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac) operation with a fleet of eight ...

China's Capital Airlines due for first A321

Capital Airlines (China) (JD, Beijing Capital) is set to add a maiden A321-200 (sl) to its fleet with cn 6818 due to arrive over the next few weeks Aerotransport reports.

The Hainan Airlines (HU, Haikou) subsidiary is currently an all-Airbus Industrie (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac) operator with twenty-six A319-100s and twenty-eight A320-200s used to serve over fifty destinations located throughout China as well as Bangkok Suvarnabhumi, Cheong Ju, Jeju, Okinawa Naha, Osaka Kansai, Phuket and ...

Gulf Air suspends Sana'a, Yemen flights indefinitely

Gulf Air (GF, Bahrain) has indefinitely suspended flights to Sana with effective Thursday, March 26. The Bahrain-based carrier cites "safety and security concerns in light of recent security developments in the Yemeni capital."

Bahrain along with other Sunni-dominated countries such as Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia have now all moved their respective embassies from Sana'a to Aden after the former came under the control of the Shi'a-backed Houthi movement earlier this ...