The Serbian Government announced that together with a new strategic partner it would name the new carrier. It is believed that the Government’s rash decision to form a new airline is a result of Turkish Airlines’ demands which will most likely take on the new Jat. Since Turkey is not part of the European Union Turkish Airlines would most probably take over 49% of the new airline while the Serbian Government would own the other 51%, in order to avoid membership problems in the future.
The CEO of Jat Airways said that none of the airline’s passengers will be affected by the change and that Jat will do everything for the transitional process to pass by as smoothly as possible. However, the airline’s workers union “Nezavisnost” was shocked by the news. The union leader told the country’s public broadcaster RTS, “This is very bad news. Many will loose their jobs. We have learned that the Government made such a monumental decision via a telephone conference. They might as well have sent SMS messages to each other”. The pilots union welcomed the news.
Nevertheless, it is expected that Jat Airways will celebrate 83 years of existence under this name in June.
Ash cloud update
Today all airports across the EX-YU are open. Flights are operating to unaffected areas of Europe. A small number of flights have taken off in northern Europe after five days of inactivity caused by the spread of volcanic ash from Iceland.