Jat left out to dry

Has the Government given up?
Several months ago the Serbian national carrier, Jat Airways, called on banks to offer loans to the airline so it could repair several grounded aircraft. After the consortium made up of Société Générale and Unicredit Bank won, the Serbian Government, as the airline’s owner, was expected to give guarantees that the loan would be returned in due course, which is standard procedure. Instead, there has been no word from the Government and as a result the banks refused to issue Jat the much needed loan, the Serbian daily “Blic” reports. Furthermore, after Jat recently sold its headquarters to the telecommunications company “Telekom Serbia” (owned by the Government) all of the 10.3 million Euros are yet to appear in Jat’s bank account.

The above mentioned finances were supposed to be used to get Jat’s grounded fleet into the air. A total of four aircraft are currently grounded. Two are expected to be in the sky by the end of June, after their engines arrive from Lufthansa Technic, while the other two will have to wait for better times to come.

Meanwhile, the Serbian Government is planning to create a new national carrier which would be the successor to Jat Airways. It will inherit everything the airline has minus the financial burden. Recently, it was revealed that the Jat Airways’ CEO, Srdjan Radovanović, held talks with the Serbian Prime Minister, Mirko Cvetković, however, the content of the talks was never revealed.

Jat has seen mild growth in passenger numbers this year. In the first four months of 2010, the Serbian carrier recorded a net loss of 7.2 million Euros, down from 16.3 million the same period last year. Revenue decreased from 26.4 million in 2009 to 25.5 million in 2010. However, losses were down from 42.8 million in 2009 to 32.8 million this year.

In a surprise move earlier this year, Jat cancelled its plan to lease two Boeing B737-700. Negotiations are continuing with Airbus about a 12 year old order for 8 Airbus A319s. It is now expected that the airline, or its successor, will receive 4 A319s between 2012 and 2013 with training for pilots and maintenance personnel to be provided by Airbus.


  1. Anonymous10:24

    To all interested...read more about this in the serbian newspapers/internet for ex b92..

  2. Anonymous10:53

    Ah... Boeing is retarded if they allow one of their oldest customers to go all Airbus! Oh well.. their loss.
    I atually like the 319, it's a nice and cool aircraft!!

  3. Doot17:49

    as if Boeing give a flying **** about JAT. Who cares if their their "oldest customer"??

    Really? why do you think they should care about anything other than how healthy a business they are NOW?

  4. JATBEGMEL20:31

    4 A319's isnt a fleet replacement. There are 10 B733 in the fleet, 6 functional, 2 in maintenance and 2 being used for spare parts at BEG. If JAT crew are going to be trained for Airbus aircraft, would be intresting if JAT will make the shift from Boeing to Airbus aircraft, considering the B733's are now aging, funds for more leased aircraft could feed the account for new airbus aircraft. What ever comes is welcomed. Lets just hope new aircraft means improved in flight service and an improved schedule.

  5. Does someone know why are all JATs' regular flights from Belgrade to Tivat and Podgorica canceled today? Instead, there are tree flights Tivat via Podgorica...

  6. When I see these JAT Oldies I wonder how safety are they?
    They look so worn out and dirty..
    And btw. Dear Doot it is neither SFRJ nor 1980, so undoubtly must Boieng fight to keep its old customers, at least!In situation like this, when almost all Boeing Airlines in Europe have switched to Airbus it is MUST for Boieng to keep JAT by its side.They have already lost OU, Bulgaria Air, Czech,Tarom,Olympic...

  7. JATBEGMEL14:59


    They havent lost OU as they never had OU. LH leased Zagal/OU the B732 they had. It never was their aircraft. RO hasnt gone Airbus either, they have 733, 737 and 738 aircraft, with the 738's arriving in the fleet late last year, that is after the A318's. As for FB, i think their Boeing aircraft was leased, they still have a couple B733's. Boeing has bigger more important customers than JAT or RO, OK and FB such as EK, FR, U2, QF etc who order much more aircraft than all the ones you mentioned - combined. JAT aicraft are very safe, have high safety standards and are a known carrier in regards to safety, regardless of their age. In the US there are still active DC9's which are much older than JAT B733's.

  8. JATBEGMEL is right. Some of the DL's DC9s are getting close to their 40th birthday.

  9. JATBEGMEL15:20

    @ JU500

    1 went to TGD normally just JU664 became JU702, departed half an hour behind schedule and went via TIV. JU680 to TIV became JU710 and departed ontime just routed via TGD. maybe aircraft issues and unfilled flights was the reason for it.

  10. However JAT has one of the oldest fleets in Europe.And yet, JAT had some safety incidents in the last 4-5 years.
    And you can check OU had 5 B732 before it switched to Airbus in 1998 and this was also the case with FB-they received their first Airbus 2 years ago and all the airlines I have mentioned are phasing out the B733 or 735 and replacing them with Airbus.
    Except RO-you are right!
    But saying that only big customers are important is kind of joke in business.
    The market share plays a very big role in enterpreunership and it is tied to the management's performance!

  11. Just to correct JATBEGMEL,

    The 737 OU operated were owned not leased. It is said that they did buy them at a real good price though.

    BTW, Jat was not just a Boeing customer. They did have Mc Donald Douglas products as well as Aerospatiale and ATR, so its not like they were a loyal Boeing only airline like for example, Qantas once was.

  12. JATBEGMEL11:26

    @ Q400

    Thanks for the correction. I had the impression they were leased from LH. Good point about the MD, DC and ATR aircraft.

    @ IN007

    what airline doesnt go without incidents? theyre normal. even with the newest aircraft you get incidents, for example the EK A345 departing MEL for DXB who had a tale strike on take off. 2 or 4 short-medium haul aircraft isnt that much comparing to say Ryan Air who i think almost has 200 B73# aircraft.


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