Government plans for Jat sell offOver the weekend, Serbia’s Prime Minister Mirko Cvetković said that the Government is working hard to sell the country’s national airline – Jat Airways. As the Beta News Agency reports, during this month the Government will decide upon the best way in which to sell Jat. It plans to create a new company with a similar name, either Jat Air or Jat Airlines, which would take over all of Jat Airways’ operations, aircraft, employees etc. The new airline, with a slight name change, would not inherit Jat Airways’ debt and therefore would have its balance sheets clean. With a clean financial record the Government would then sell the new Jat to an interested party. Cvetković believes that this is the only way Jat could entice buyers. This proposal might be in front of Government ministers at one of their weekly meetings this April and the groundwork preparation for the new airline could begin in May, Beta says.
Nevertheless, Jat Airways will go ahead with obtaining a 51 million Euro loan, which it eventually might not even have to pay back as it would stick to the old airline.
Competition is now becoming fierce in the Serbian aviation industry with a dozen new airlines beginning services to Belgrade in the past few months. Yesterday, the Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate said that a popular low cost European airline has acquired information about Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport. The Directorate said it did not wish to reveal the airline’s name as it has not applied for a license yet.