Wednesday, July 15, 2009

End of MAT, birth of Mat Airways?

A cat has nine lives - will MAT be as lucky?
Macedonia’s MAT will be shut down in September if the carrier does not hand its financial reports to the Macedonian Civil Aviation Agency (CAA). According to the agency the reports were due to be handed in on June but the CAA has given the carrier another 2 months. It is not expected that the grounded Macedonian carrier will follow through. The airline’s owners have already applied to register a new company named Mat Airways, with a leased Antonov 24 aircraft from an unknown airline called Airlift Service. The CAA has said that the airline cannot receive an operating license due to Macedonian aviation regulations which state that in order to be registered as an airline in the country the company must have at least one fully owned aircraft. If Mat Airways does not own an aircraft by July 30, 2009, its application will be terminated. Mat Airways is registered as a Cypriot company with its seat in Skopje. Another company, from Turkey, has also applied for a license.

Meanwhile, the demand in air traffic weakened in Macedonia, with passenger volumes falling 11%, the CAA director Zoran Krstevski said on Monday. "The drop is within the European air traffic decline and has been prompted by the situation on Macedonia's market", Krstevski explained. "As you know, MAT has had no aircraft for some time and it does not operate regular services, and it is also banned from flying to several countries due to debt issues in connection with Eurocontrol", Krstevski said.

In a poll conducted by this blog some time ago where a total of 56 people voted, some 61% believed that MAT would cease all operations by the end of the year. In a more recent poll in which 104 people participated, 55% said that the best solution for MAT would be a takeover by Serbia’s Jat Airways.

4 comments:

  1. Glad to see the polls are of some use!

    I had to actually look up what an Antonov-24 was, and reached the conclusion that if that's the only plane they can get a hold of to run the airline, it's time to all join hands and sing Adieu, Adieu (along with Andre Rieu) to MAT ever flying again.

    There are old (but still certified) 732s left, right and centre either for purchase or lease and would have at least symbolised some form of chance to make a comeback. Or perhaps some AT4s?

    Have the ex-MAT CRJs found new homes yet, or are they still stored?

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  2. The MAT CRJ 900 that was being 'stored' in LJU by the lessor has already been repainted and I believe will be delivered to the new customer soon.

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  3. It would have been a lot better for Mat had the Jat takeover taken place they would have had acess to new destignations as well as Jat (to be former)fleet.
    Are negotiations still taking place or has the fleet renewal been canceled

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  4. I had to look up what the A24 was and found it on wikipedia. Its not an ideal plane for MAT but better than nothing.
    Since the airliners must own at least one plane then cant they just buy a cheap little cessna because its still a plane.

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