Fiji Airways looks to defer aircraft payments and reduce staffing levels by over 50%

Fiji Airways ©AirTeamImages

Fiji Airways has announced that it will permanently cut its current staff levels by 51% while also negotiating with lenders and aircraft lessors to defer payments and, additionally, arrange further debt financing as the South Pacific carrier struggles with the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. The staff cuts equate to 758 employees, of which 78 are expatriate pilots and eight are expatriate executives. “The sad reality of prolonged flight suspensions means that we simply do not have work for a large segment of our workforce now, and for the foreseeable future,” Fiji Airways Chief Executive Andre Viljoen said in a Read more

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IATA: heavy new debt levels will weigh down airlines’ recovery

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has released an analysis showing that the airline industry’s global debt could rise to US$550 billion by year-end. That’s a US$120 billion increase over debt levels at the start of 2020. US$67 billion of the new debt is composed of government loans (US$50 billion), deferred taxes (US$5 billion), and loan guarantees (US$12 billion). US$52 billion is from commercial sources including commercial loans (US$23 billion), capital market debt (US$18 billion), debt from new operating leases (US$5 billion), and accessing existing credit facilities (US$6 billion). Financial aid is a lifeline to get through the worst of Read more

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Finnair signs ten-year Global Maintenance Agreement with ATR

Finnair signs ten-year GMA with ATR for Nordic Regional Airlines’ fleet of 12 ATR 72-500

ATR and one of its long-standing customers, the Finnish airline Finnair, have signed a ten-year Global Maintenance Agreement (GMA). Through this package, Finnair and Nordic Regional Airlines (NoRRA) – who operates Finnair’s regional ATR traffic – will benefit from a customised support from ATR, which will help the airline better anticipate maintenance costs while enhancing the dispatch reliability of its fleet of 12 ATR 72-500. This pay-by-the-hour contract covers the repair, overhaul and pooling services of Line Replaceable Units, along with its door-to-door delivery and an on-site leased stock of spare parts. Finnair will also benefit from blades maintenance and Read more

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Airbus A400M achieves Automatic Low Level Flight certification

RAF A400M performing low level flights in Wales ©Scott Norbury

The Airbus A400M new generation airlifter has achieved a new decisive milestone after the certification of its Automatic Low Level Flight capability, offering a unique capability in its class for a military transport aircraft.  The certification campaign, performed in April above the Pyrenees and central France, involved operations down to 500ft, including transitions from low level flight to other operations like aerial delivery.   This first certification phase concerns operations with Visual Meteorological Conditions, meaning with crew visibility. There will be a second phase including Instrumental Meteorological Conditions, without visibility, to be certified in the second quarter of 2021.

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S7 Technics extends scope of EASA Part-21 J certificate

S7 Technics’ DOA (Design Organisation Approval) has received an extension of Part-21J certificate scope to perform design works on water and waste systems (ATA 38), which gives an opportunity to design modifications and repairs for all components of these systems: pipelines, water systems of galleys and toilets, water tanks, waste tanks and other. The certificate extension required the necessity to pass an EASA audit, which included the staff competence checking, as well as the checking of the ability to perform this type of works. Due to the opportunity to design modification and repairs under its own design approval, S7 Technics Read more

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Congo Airways converts Embraer E175 order to E190-E2 Jets

Congo Airways converts order of two Embraer E175 into E190 E2 aircraft ©Embraer

Congo Airways have converted the firm order made in December 2019 for two E175 aircraft, with purchase rights for two more, into a firm order for two E190-E2 jets, with purchase rights for a further two. The new deal has a total value of US$256 million at current list prices with all purchase rights exercised, and will be included in Embraer’s second quarter backlog. The aircraft will be configured in a dual class layout seating 96 passengers in total, with 12 staggered business class seats. Deliveries are expected to begin in the second quarter of 2022. This is the second Read more

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DC Aviation Group receives contract to overhaul Challenger 605 including 48-month check

DC Aviation Group have been awarded a contract for the comprehensive overhaul of a Challenger 605 including a 48-month check, a cabin refurbishment as well as a Proline 21 Advanced Upgrade. The work will be carried out at DC Aviation’s Stuttgart Maintenance Centre. The Proline 21 Advanced Upgrade includes the installation of Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) equipment. This surveillance technology is already mandatory in the U.S.A. and the UAE since January 1, 2020 and will be mandatory in Europe from June 7, 2020. With this system, the aircraft can be tracked as it determines its position via satellite navigation and Read more

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AerCap reschedules aircraft deliveries

©AerCap

AerCap has rescheduled the delivery of 37 aircraft that were previously expected to be delivered in 2021 and 2022. These aircraft are now expected to be delivered in 2023 and later years. Working in concert with the aircraft manufacturers and its airline customers, AerCap has rescheduled the delivery of over 100 aircraft that were originally planned to be delivered in 2020, 2021 and 2022. The rescheduling of these deliveries has reduced the company’s cash capital expenditures in 2020 and 2021 by a total of approximately US$4.7 billion. AerCap currently expects to have cash capital expenditures of approximately US$1.1 billion for Read more

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Lufthansa agrees bailout terms with German government

©Lufthansa Group Airlines

After many weeks of protracted negotiations, Deutsche Lufthansa AG (Lufthansa), Germany’s largest and Europe’s second-largest carrier has announced it has come to a deal with the German government over a rescue package valued at €9.0 billion. The airline, which also includes subsidiaries Germanwings, Austrian Airlines, Swiss International Airlines and Brussels airlines has agreed to give the government a 20% stake in the carrier through the German Economic Stabilization Fund set up to assist companies hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. The government is injecting up to €5.7 billion into the airline, earning a return that starts at 4% this year and Read more

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Virgin Orbit rocket test launch fails

Virgin Orbit LauncherOne rocket fails after release from aircraft ©Virgin Orbit

Virgin Orbit has released that it has conducted a launch demonstration of its innovative air-launched rocket in the skies over the Pacific Ocean just off the California coast. The company successfully completed all of its pre-launch procedures, the captive carry flight out to the drop site, clean telemetry lock from multiple dishes, a smooth pass through the racetrack, terminal count, and a clean release. After being released from the carrier aircraft, the LauncherOne rocket successfully lighted its booster engine on cue but then an anomaly occurred early in first stage flight, and the mission safely terminated. The carrier aircraft Cosmic Read more

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