EU set to ban Belarus carriers after forced diversion
24.05.2021 – 21:56 UTC
Following a meeting on May 24, 2021, the European Council has resolved to ban all Belarus airlines from landing in the European Union and from transiting its airspace.
The Council’s conclusions have also appealed to all EU airlines to avoid overflying Belarus.
The European Council is a body comprising the heads of states and governments of all 27 EU member states. However, it does not have direct legislative power, and all of its conclusions need to be passed into law by other bodies, including the European Commission and the Council of the European Union. As such, the ban is not immediately effective.
Flag carrier Belavia (B2, Minsk National) is the only Belarus airline operating scheduled flights to the European Union. According to the ch-aviation schedules module, the airline currently connects Minsk with 19 destinations in the bloc. Cargo specialists Rada Airlines, Rubystar Airways, BySky, and Genex all hold EASA Third Country Operator certificates, permitting them to operate charter flights.
The conclusions were adopted in the wake of the state-backed…
Ryanair to open Riga, Latvia base in 4Q21
30.04.2021 – 23:09 UTC
Ryanair (FR, Dublin Int’l) will base two aircraft in Riga from October 2021, resulting in 16 new international routes across Europe for the Latvian capital.
These will include the following new routes:
- 5x weekly to Warsaw Modlin (Poland);
- 4x weekly to Oslo Torp (Norway);
- 3x weekly to each of Aarhus (Denmark), Budapest (Hungary), Gothenburg Landvetter
(Sweden), and Rome Ciampino (Italy);
- 2x weekly to each of Bristol Int’l (UK), Kraków (Poland), Kyiv Boryspil and Lviv
(Ukraine), Malaga (Spain), Memmingen (Germany), Palermo (Italy), Paris Beauvais (France), Frankfurt Hahn (Germany), and Venice Treviso (Italy).
In total, Ryanair will plough USD200 million into the base which will operate 30 routes from Riga representing 95 departures per week. It will create 60 direct jobs while contributing to the economic recovery of the region, the airline said in a statement.
The new services will be a significant boost to Ryanair’s capacity at Riga, which currently sits at 3.66% out of the…
Latvia’s airBaltic to build Riga cargo hub
26.04.2021 – 13:34 UTC
airBaltic (BT, Riga) will build what it called the largest dedicated air cargo handling facility in the Baltics, having signed a land reservation agreement with Riga Airport for a new Baltic Cargo Hub, the Latvian flag carrier announced in a statement on April 22.
The 96.14%-state-owned airline was the winner of a tender the airport issued in November 2020, to lease the land and construct a multimodal logistics centre. According to initial plans, the size of the Baltic Cargo Hub will be 6,000 square metres.
Construction on the hangar is scheduled to begin in late 2022 for completion by early 2024, and the project will be “financed through banks and operated by Baltijas Kravu centrs SIA,” a cargo handling subsidiary of airBaltic, the carrier said.
“For years, airBaltic Cargo has provided essential mail and cargo shipments to and from Latvia using its existing hangar. However, the hangar will be demolished to make room for the Rail Baltica tracks,” airBaltic CEO Martin Gauss explained, referring to an ongoing railway infrastructure project to link Finland…
Nigeria’s Cally Air takes delivery of first aircraft, a B737
12.04.2021 – 12:31 UTC
Nigerian startup Cally Air (Calabar) has taken delivery of its first aircraft, a B737-300 bought from Magnetic Leasing, to be based out of Calabar, with a second B737-300 on order.
5N-BYR (msn 29266) was delivered to Lagos on April 6, 2021, after it was ferried from Tallinn Lennart Meri via Malta Int’l to Nigeria, according to FlightRadar24 ADS-B data.
The 22-year-old jet is the first of two former airBaltic (BT, Riga) B737-300s secured from Magnetic Leasing by the nascent airline, which is a public-private partnership (PPP) between the Nigerian state of Cross River and Dana Air (9J, Lagos) in a bid to boost tourism to the state bordering Cameroon and the Atlantic Ocean coastline. Aero Contractors (N2, Lagos) is the actual carrier that will operate the aircraft for Cally Air, however.
Configured with 144 all-economy seating, 5N-BYR previously flew with airBaltic (BT, Riga) as YL-BBR from March 31, 2009, to June 30, 2020, whereafter it was stored, the ch-aviation…