Round-up

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By TESTCustomwebLP TESTCustomwebLP May 6, 2015 11:00

Round-up

It caught my eye that several news outlets across the globe have run with MAS stories over the past week with regard to widebody aircraft for sale /lease posted exclusively with Airline Economics For Sale/Lease listings (content me to include your own listings free of charge). This prompted Christoph Mueller to state to a major newspaper that “recent speculation on the airline offering some of its fleet for sale or lease is too premature when nothing concrete has been achieved.”

Well the fact is they are being listed as for sale or lease officially and exclusively (coming from the highest level at MAS) right here – so Christoph will be forced to issue some sort of clarification at some point soon. However we are aware that in that particular interview Christoph went on to state that the market needed to give MAS room to explore various options in determining the most viable strategy. That is what they are doing and we here atAirline Economics are happy to assist as always.

There is so much going on in the market at the moment while MAS restructures. Not least in Oman (as reported here in October 2014 but only confirmed yesterday) where the Sultanate of Oman has announced plans to move forward with the creation of a low-cost budget airline. The Public Authority for Civil Aviation in Oman has invited companies within the sultanate to put forward proposals to create a second operator.

Currently, Oman Air is the country’s sole air carrier. After proposals are reviewed, a new operator will be established to create the budget service. “We are conducting a study to introduce a new airline, like [a] budget airline,” said Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Salim Al Futaisi, minister of transport and communications.

Oman presents exceptional opportunity for growth, just as Iran might and Cuba will. Muscat International Airport has seen 12% growth over the past year at close to 9 million passengers from the 4 million in 2008.

Oman Air has been expanding rapidly of late and is running at a significant loss as a result. Oman Air can survive as a long haul carrier being fed by a low cost airline and the low cost can be fed in turn by the flag carrier, but can Oman survive if the new low cost carrier is in competition on local routes? It would be a mess. The new budget airline would be privately owned it has been muted and thus Oman Air could well suffer.

Meanwhile it is becoming clear that Tel Aviv is becoming an aviation target. Cathay Pacific is to launch flights between Tel Aviv and Hong Kong while Ryanair is also planning to connect various European destinations to Tel Aviv – Will all of these future connections have an impact on El AL? Cathay Pacific plans to start operating the flights towards the middle of next year using A350s.

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By TESTCustomwebLP TESTCustomwebLP May 6, 2015 11:00