MA to expand its fleet, meeting the strictest aviation standards as the main criteria for aircraft selection
Montenegro Airlines wet-leased a larger capacity aircraft compared to the existing ones in its fleet, in accordance with adopted business plan for 2019, so that in the period from April 15 to October 15, there will be a total of 6 aircraft in the fleet of the national carrier. Aircraft Lease Agreement based on the so-called "wet lease" or ACMI arrangement, which besides aircraft includes crew, technical maintenance and insurance of the aircraft, was signed with Romanian airline Blue Air.
Aforementioned Agreement envisages the lease of the aircraft type Boeing 737 Classic, therefore in the period from April 15 to May 15 a 120- seat Boeing 737-500, registration mark YR-AMC will operate in behalf of Montenegro Airlines, however, the jet will be swapped with a 148 -seat B737-300, registration mark YR-BAP. Both aircraft are 1991 Boeing, and were previously in the Lufthansa fleet, Norwegian Air Shuttle and so on.
Blue Air, the company registered in EU, operates in accordance with the strictest standards of aviation safety and security prescribed by European Aviation Safety Agency(EASA). This airline is a member of International Air Transport Association (IATA), therefore the airline is IOSA certified, which is the evidence of the successful adoption of strictly set safety and security standards in aviation on a global-scale. Blue Air has 26 aircraft in its fleet, they handled more than 26 million passengers so far, out of which 5 million passengers were handled in 2018. The airline operates through 8 bases of operations across Europe, and fly to more than 100 destinations. Prior to MA, they successfully cooperated on the basis of ACMI arrangements with companies such as Alitalia, LOT Polish Airlines, TUI Nederland, etc.
"During the negotiations on leasing aircraft for the summer season, we were guided by the fact that our partner shall before all meet the strictest aviation safety and security standards, as in the case with MA. Blue Air being registered as EU company, operates in accordance with EASA standards, and is also IOSA certificate holder. This is the confirmation that the strictest safety and security standards in air traffic are met. Furthermore, the agreed commercial conditions, positive reviews and recommendations from the reference companies in the airline industry, confirming that Blue Air is the airline with the highest level of operability and professionalism, have led to signing the Aircraft Lease Agreement, on mutual satisfaction", stated Chief Executive Officer of MA, Živko Banjević.
Speaking of the similar arrangement from the previous year, Banjević pointed out that it proved to be a good business deal. The best income statement in the last 10 years was achieved in 2018, as well as the best commercial result in the company's 25-year history. Total direct and indirect impact on the tourism and other economy of Montenegro amounted between 150 and 200 million euros, he noted.
"During the summer season we will operate on 30 regular and charter destinations, which would not be possible without six aircraft in the fleet. We are ready to address the challenges posed by the market in 2019, to transport the greater number of passengers compared to the previous year, i.e. 660.000 of passengers in all three categories of traffic, and therefore to increase the contribution to the overall revenues and enhance the development of tourism and other economy in Montenegro", concluded Banjević.