Canada’s Bombardier identified China Express Airlines as a customer for its CRJ900 regional jet last week during Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s visit to Beijing for the Canada China Business Forum. The conditional order for six dual-class-configured CRJ900s plus options on another five, signed late last year, will give Bombardier its first sale of a new commercial airplane in China in “eight or nine years.”
News and issues relating specifically to regional airlines, including aircraft, engines, personnel, acquisitions, accidents, safety, security and training; and coverage of annual conventions of the U.S. Regional Airline Association (RAA) and European Regions Airline Association (ERA).
A growing appetite among Indian carriers to serve regional routes makes the country a potentially big market for 250 regional jets with a capacity of up to 120 seats, according to Brazilian airframer Embraer. Twin-turboprop manufacturer ATR estimates in the next five years India will requirearound 100 aircraft,and 200 in the longer term.
US Airways announced last month that it finished installing first-class sections on 110 US Airways Express Embraer E170/175s and Bombardier CRJ700/900s. With the addition of first-class sections on regional partners PSA, Mesa Air Group and Republic Airways, US Airways now offers same-class service to more than 85 destinations. The company began installing the two-by-one seating configurations on its Express aircraft in September and completed all aircraft in mid-December.
AMR management has proposed loosening the scope clause language in its Allied Pilots Association (APA) contract as part of its plan to return to profitability following its eventual exit from bankruptcy.
The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued a type certificate for the Sukhoi Superjet 100-95 on February 3, paving the way for the Russian jet’s operation by airlines in Western Europe and in countries that use EASA regulations as their reference standard.
American Eagle last month confirmed plans to replace all of its ATR 72 turboprops operating from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport with Embraer ERJ 135s, 140s and 145s. As a result, 14 markets throughout Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas gained all-jet service beginning January 31.
Regional airline service has been slow to take root in the Middle East, and especially at the entry-level turboprop end of the market. But now, a start-up operator in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is preparing to launch a feeder service to the region’s aspiring hubs in Abu Dhabi and Doha, giving locals the chance to bypass crowded Dubai.
Based in Fujairah, UAE, Eastern Express plans to ferry business passengers into Abu Dhabi and Doha to connect with growing Gulf-based international passenger networks starting during this year’s first quarter.
As the Department of Transportation’s Small Community Air Service Development Program (SCASD) enters its 10th year, two communities hope their share of $14.9 million in grants awarded in 2011 will help them land new flights.
SCASD came into being in April 2000 as part of the Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century (AIR-21) as a way to offer grants to help smaller communities improve air service.
A study commissioned by the European Regions Airline Association (ERA) and the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) contends that changes to slot allocation rules proposed by the European Commission would penalize regional carriers, regional airports and business aviation operators and lead to job losses in Europe.
Toulouse, France-based regional turboprop manufacturer ATR is pressing ahead with plans to increase its production rate progressively over the next three years while preparing to add a larger, 90-seat model to its product line, which now consists of the 50-seat ATR 42-600 and 74-seat ATR 72-600.