In a move to ensure the viability of Malaysia Airlines, the country’s sovereign wealth fund, Khazanah Nasional Berhad, has stepped in with $430 million rescue plan to delist the national carrier and take it private.
The governments of Australia, Malaysia and China jointly announced that Australia has awarded a contract to a private company to continue the search of the southern Indian Ocean sea floor for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. The company plans to use two ships towing deep-water vehicles to conduct the search, which is expected to take up to 12 months.
The International Civil Aviation Organization has agreed to establish a task force early next week to identify “gaps” in the system used by the airline industry to assess risk of flying over conflict zones.
The apparent lack of a cohesive international system for assessing threats in airspace over conflict zones has revealed itself again in differing conclusions reached by major Persian Gulf airlines about the dangers of flying over Iraq.
The European Cockpit Association (ECA) has called for “intense scrutiny” of the air transport industry’s assessment of risks and the principles of flying over conflict zones in the wake of the July 17 loss of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.
India’s loss-making Jet Airways and its new 24-percent owner Etihad Airways are formulating plans for restructuring debt and fleet rationalization for enhancing a full-service branding. Jet, reporting $689 million in declared losses last year, expects to show profits by 2017, founder and chairman Naresh Goyal said at a July 23 press conference in New Delhi.
The lead insurer for Malaysia Airlines war risk hull coverage, London-based Atrium Underwriting Group, has agreed to settle its share of the latest hull loss suffered by Malaysia Airlines. Western military intelligence suggests that separatists in eastern Ukraine shot down Flight MH17 as it flew at 33,000 feet over a region near Donetsk, killing all 298 on board.
In response to the apparent shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) denied even the possibility that any airline risks the safety of its passengers, crew and aircraft for the sake of saving fuel by taking the most direct flight routings. “Airlines depend on governments and ATC authorities to advise which airspace is available for flight and they plan within those limits,” said IATA director general and CEO Tony Tyler on July 18.
A team of ICAO investigators is expected to be dispatched this week to assist in the search for what brought down Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine on July 17. The Ukraine government officially requested the Montreal aviation organization’s help on July 18. Under ICAO’s Annex 13, the country where the accident happens is primarily responsible for conducting the investigation, unless, as in this case, that country requests additional assistance.
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