Malmö - The new A220, which was to be delivered by the beginning of 2020, is once again delayed. Swedish regional carrier BRA (Braathens Regional Airways) has suspended the delivery of the aircraft with reference to the unstable domestic market, taxation, and weak Swedish krona.
Braathens Regional Aviation, the Malmö-based wet- leasing company, and the sister foundation of Braathens Regional Airways signed an agreement with Bombardier in 2011 to buy ten CS100 and ten CS300 in 2011. The first deliveries were set to 2013. Since then, much has happened to both companies.
The latest message was that the delivery of the ten Airbus A220, which the order was transformed into after Airbus took over the CSeries production, would start by 2020.
But now the plans change again.
Yes, we have decided to pause the deliveries, and review where we stand to make a decision later this fall,says Emma Sandsjö, communications director at BRA.
There are a number of factors that make the airline now take the drastic step according to Sandjö. The average age of the 12 Avro jets (2 RJ85, 10 RJ100) is around 23 years, and in two years they have produced about 40,000 rotations per device. It's a bit over half of the normal life-cycle, so buying new aircraft is not crucial despite the high maintenance costs of these devices.
This should be taken into account by the fact the shrinking Swedish domestic market. Last week, BRA announced that they reduced the number of frequencies between Bromma and Umeå, because of the taxes imposed for operations.
We have an unusually weak Swedish krona. We have all our revenues in Swedish currency, but we pay the costs in dollars,said Sandsjö.
In addition, BRA has made an investment of around two billion for a dozen brand new ATR72-600. A purchase motivated by the environment-friendly policy of the airline. The ATRs have reduced emissions by about 35 percent compared with Saab 2000s, which previously dominated the fleet.
Apparently, ten new A220 will provide better fuel economy than the aging AVROs, even with nearly 40 percent less emissions. However, the investment of SEK 3.5 billion makes the airline take a time out for a new decision.
We are in constant dialogue with Airbus and expect to make a decision later this fall,the operator says.