|Serbia’s Prime Minister announces transatlantic flights|
Air Serbia will launch long haul flights by the end of 2015, according to the country’s Prime Minister, Aleksandar Vučić, in comments made yesterday. The news came on the day Mr. Vučić met with Etihad Airways’ CEO James Hogan in Belgrade. At a press conference, the Prime Minister said, “I have some good news. By the end of 2015 Air Serbia will fly to the United States”. He added, “That is excellent news in a sea of problems we are facing”. In October 2013, Mr. Vučić stated the national carrier would launch long haul flights to the United States and Canada by the start of 2016 at the latest, using Airbus A330 aircraft. Furthermore, he added that Etihad CEO James Hogan confirmed plans for flights to launch from Belgrade to Chicago and Toronto.
Serbia is currently in the process of obtaining a category one ranking from the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), without which, flights operated by a Serbian carrier to the States are rendered impossible. During the FAA’s latest assessment of Serbia’s aviation authorities last month, the agency found it will have to undertake an additional check before upgrading the country from its current category two status to category one.
During yesterday’s press conference, PM Vučić praised his country’s national carrier. “I have just received a report, in April Air Serbia recorded an 80% passenger increase compared to last year. They [Air Serbia] will not take away anything from the state, rather they will contribute to it”, he said. JAT Yugoslav Airlines operated its final service to Chicago on May 17, 1992 and to New York three days later. On May 21, the United States introduced an embargo on all Yugoslav Airlines flights. During the 1980s JAT operated services to Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Los Angeles and New York City from Belgrade.
Despite the May Day public holiday being observed across the former Yugoslavia tomorrow, EX-YU Aviation continues to publish news as per normal