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LATEST NEWS

Wednesday, October 28th, 2020

IATA warns that 1.3 million airline jobs at stake as failures to reduce cash burn bite deeper

The International Air Transport Association has warned that without government intervention and opening up of international borders, over 1.3 million airline jobs are at stake, with a further 3.5 million jobs in the aerospace sector also at risk.

Earlier predictions that the signs of recovery would be seen in the fourth quarter of the year have failed to ring true and 2021 predictions have now been altered from a projected 29% drop in revenue to a 46% drop, compared to 2019 figures. For 2020 IATA anticipates full-year traffic will be down 66% compared to 2019.

“The fourth quarter of 2020 will be extremely difficult and there is little indication the first half of 2021 will be significantly better, so long as borders remain closed and/or arrival quarantines remain in place. Without additional government financial relief, the median airline has just 8.5 months of cash remaining at current burn rates. And we can’t cut costs fast enough to catch up with shrunken revenues,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

Although airlines have taken drastic steps to reduce costs, around 50% of airlines’ costs are fixed or semi-fixed, at least in the short term. The result is that costs have not fallen as fast as revenues. For example, the year-on-year decline in operating costs for the second quarter was 48% compared with a 73% decline in operating revenues, based on the IATA sample of 76 airlines. As airlines have reduced capacity (available seat kilometers, or ASKs) in response to the collapse in travel demand, unit costs (cost per ASK, or CASK) have risen, since there are fewer seat kilometers to ‘spread’ costs over. IATA estimates that to achieve a breakeven operating result and neutralize cash burn in 2021, unit costs will need to fall by 30% compared to average CASK for 2020.

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Virgin Galactic hires two new pilots into its Pilot Corps

Virgin Galactic has appointed two new pilots into its Pilot Corps, bringing the total number of pilots to eight. Jameel Janjua and Patrick Moran will be based at Spaceport America, New Mexico, and join the Virgin Galactic team as preparations for commercial service continue.

Both will embark on an extensive training program before flying SpaceShipTwo. In addition to the Spaceship, the pilots will also train to fly the carrier aircraft, VMS Eve. VMS Eve provides a way for the pilots to fly simulated parts of the SpaceShipTwo flight trajectory, gaining valuable hands-on training. Other assignments for the pilots will include flying other company support aircraft, working mission control, flight planning, and support various detailed engineering and project roles across the company.

    
While Janjua and Moran will initially operate in a test pilot capacity, they, along with the rest of the Pilot Corps, will ultimately become the world’s first commercial Spaceship Pilots, flying Future Astronauts on their life-changing journey into space and back.

Each of them has flown in both military and commercial roles, involving training, operations and test, as well as flying passengers and managing crew.

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ALC delivers new Airbus A321-200neo LR aircraft to Titan Airways

Air Lease Corporation (ALC) has delivered one new Airbus A321-200neo LR aircraft on long-term lease to Titan Airways (United Kingdom).  Featuring CFM International LEAP-1A33 engines, this aircraft is the first of two A321-200neo LRs confirmed to deliver to the British carrier from ALC’s order book with Airbus. 

The second A321-200neo LR aircraft is scheduled to deliver to Titan Airways in Spring 2021.

Avolon appoints Paul Geaney Chief Risk Officer

Avolon, the international aircraft leasing company, has appointed Paul Geaney as Chief Risk Officer and a member to its Executive Committee.

Geaney will assume overall responsibility for the implementation, oversight and continued development of Avolon’s risk management framework and will report to the CEO. A member of Avolon since 2010, he most recently served as Head of the OEM team with responsibility for managing Avolon’s relationships with all airframe and engine manufacturers.

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Kalitta Air signs lease agreeement for three 777-300ERSFs with GECAS Cargo

GECAS Cargo has signed an agreement with Kalitta Air for three Boeing 777-300ERSF aircraft. With this agreement, Kalitta will be the first operator of the new passenger-to-freighter type, adding to their already sizable all-cargo fleet when these aircraft deliver in 2023.

Dubbed “The Big Twin,” the 777-300ERSF will be the largest ever twin-engine freighter. As announced a year ago, the conversion program is jointly funded by GECAS and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), with GECAS delivering the prototype aircraft to undergo conversion in June of this year. Setting a new benchmark for cargo operators, The Big Twin will be powered by GE90 engines, the most powerful in-service engine.

Kalitta Air is a Michigan Limited Liability Company owned by Conrad Kalitta. Kalitta Air began service in November 2000 with three Boeing 747 aircraft and the fleet has grown to a present total of four 777Fs, 24 B747-400Fs and nine B767-300BDSFs.

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Bombardier to establish new service center in Melbourne, Australia

Bombardier Aviation has announced the development of a new service center at Essendon Fields Airport in Melbourne, Australia, building on its commitment to the Australian market and establishing the next key building block in its growing global customer support network.

The new OEM-operated Melbourne Service Center will employ some 50 people, including more than 40 highly skilled technicians and boost Bombardier’s customer service footprint in the Asia-Pacific region by some 50,000 ft².

Australia is a key market for Bombardier. With more than half of the 168-aircraft strong Australian business fleet made up of Bombardier aircraft, this new facility will serve as an important gateway to Asia-Pacific, serving as a key focal point for customers in the region and for future growth prospects of the Bombardier fleet.

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Ecuadorian Air Force takes delivery of first two H145s

Airbus Helicopters has delivered two H145s to the Ecuadorian Air Force, the first military customer in South America for this multi-purpose twin-engine helicopter. A total of six H145s will be delivered over the next year. The H145 helicopters, known as “Cobra” in the Ecuadorian Air Force, will be assigned to the 22nd Combat Wing in Guayaquil. The contract includes training for 12 pilots and 15 technicians, as part of an in-country operational training program.

The six H145 helicopters will help with missions related to national security, such as border surveillance and the fight against drug trafficking, as well as carrying out rescue operations at high altitudes, medical evacuation (MedEvac) and assistance in the case of natural disasters, both during the day and at night. This wide range of mission capabilities is thanks to the variety of equipment included such as the cargo hook, rescue crane, stretchers, searchlight, electro-optical camera for reconnaissance, etc.
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Email: tamar.jorssen@avitrader.com
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Tamar