MAT’s other aircraft a CRJ900 is still grounded in Ljubljana. This is because MAT has not payed the Canadian plane maker for the aircraft. If MAT does not provide the required finances to the aircraft manufacturer by the end of June, the CRJ will be leased to another airline. The MAT titles from the aircraft have already been taken off.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
No MAT flights anytime soon
MAT’s Boeing B737-500 – grounded and emptyA month ago the Macedonian Aviation Agency (CAA) grounded the national carrier’s sole aircraft, a Boeing B737-500, deeming it unsafe for flight. The Agency grounded the airline saying that the aircraft’s front wheel is unsafe. The grounding of the aircraft has brought the airline to the brink of collapse as it is unable to fly to the few destinations it is not banned from. The Boeing aircraft has in recent weeks been flown to Belgrade where Jat Airways, MAT’s potential new owners by the end of summer, offered to fix the front wheel of the aircraft for free, which it did. However, the Macedonian carrier and its 180 employees have received yet another blow from the country’s aviation agency after it refused to re-issue an operating license despite the aircraft in question being repaired. "CAA informs the public that a partial servicing of the MAT plane in Belgrade does not meet the requirements for overhaul of the front leg, for which the deadline has expired", the agency released in a press release. Therefore, the CAA says, “we cannot issue the license until a complete overhaul of the aircraft is carried out”. On Monday, MAT stated that the CAA’s decision is a violent attack aimed at putting the company out of operation. MAT has notified the President, the Prime Minister, the Public Attorney's Office, the Public Prosecutor's Office, the diplomatic core, as well as international institutions such as the ICAO, JAA and ECAC on the issue.