New jet to arrive in 2014Montenegro Airlines has delayed the arrival of its final Embraer jet by a year. The aircraft is now set to touch down in Podgorica in April 2014. Furthermore, the carrier has opted for the Embraer E190 jet, instead of the E195 version. Montenegro Airlines already boasts three E195s in its fleet. The E190 has minor variations to the E195 but also a lower price. In 2011 the airline expressed interest to purchase the smaller E170 version but has changed its plans. The Montenegrin government has said it will cover the cost of the ordered aircraft. Currently, the airline has eight aircraft in its fleet.
The news comes after it was revealed that the carrier has made a 5.5 million euro loss since the beginning of 2012, totalling to an accumulated loss of 17.5 million euros. The airline blames high fuel prices and a volatile euro for the negative trend. However, the good news is that the airline has managed to see its passenger numbers rise thanks to a strong tourist season this summer. In the first half of 2012, passenger figures were up by 6% thanks in large part to a strong June when numbers rose 16%. The airline has also managed to claw back passengers on its main market, Serbia, and is recording impressive figures on flights between Podgorica, Tivat and Belgrade this summer season.
Taking a swipe at a recent article published by EX-YU aviation news, Montenegro Airlines CEO, Zoran Djurišić, said that the government is the one that decides who is competent enough to lead a company based on concrete results rather than “rotten internet portals and opinions of non-governmental organisations”.