Madagascar Airlines Reinstated in IATA, Plans Fleet Expansion

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Madagascar Airlines, formerly Air Madagascar, has announced its reinstatement in the International Air Transport Association (IATA), allowing the airline to resume ticket distribution through travel agencies and tour operators. Thierry de Bailleul, the CEO, disclosed this on March 21, 2024.

This development follows the airline's return to the Billing and Settlement Plan (BSP) and the IATA Clearing House, previously excluded in 2018 and 2016 due to financial and image-related issues.

The BSP, a crucial facet of IATA, acts as an intermediary for ticket transactions, enhancing Madagascar Airlines' visibility and accessibility. To facilitate its return, a $5 million bond was required by IATA in 2022.

Thierry de Bailleul emphasized the significance, stating, "Now, flights to destinations like Antananarivo or Nosy Be can be booked through a vast network of BSP-affiliated travel agencies."

Additionally, membership in the IATA Clearing House streamlines operations, ensuring seamless ticket issuance for combined flights with other carriers, facilitating equitable revenue distribution.

Fleet Expansion and Recovery Program

Madagascar Airlines plans to augment its fleet with six new ATR 72-500s, with the initial reception of four aircraft, according to Midi-Madagascar. Reports from 24.24 Magazine suggest two of the ATR 72-500s will be leased from ACIA Aero Leasing.

The Malagasy government's decree on March 13, 2024, authorized the Ministry of Economy and Finance to guarantee leasing arrangements, aligning with Madagascar Airlines' recovery program led by Thierry de Bailleul.

The issuance of a sovereign guarantee, a prerequisite for leasing, enables World Bank financing, aiming to strengthen domestic networks and resume regional and international flights.

Madagascar Airlines faced substantial losses since its inception, with accumulated debts and economic challenges highlighted in a November 7, 2023 statement. Despite setbacks, the airline remains committed to expanding its operations and revitalizing its presence in the aviation industry.

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