Gibraltar-Madrid air service in leasing claim

by PANORAMA reporter: The future of the Gibraltar-Madrid air service provided by the Spanish 'Andalus' airline took a turn for the worse, following information made available to the Gibraltar press on Friday which point at the airline being in serious financial difficulties.

The press has been informed that the airline owes over $611,000, equivalent to 400,000, to the company leasing two of its aircraft to Andalus, which it is claimed has defaulted in payments since November.

The leasing company sent grounding instructions in February, followed by a termination of the leasing agreement in early March, but it is said the airline is refusing to return the aircraft.

As a result, the leasing company GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) has instituted legal action in both Spain and Gibraltar against the airline.

Gibraltar lawyers are poised to serve an injunction on the airline should it fly into Gibraltar.

The airline is however saying that it has ceased operations temporarily until April 19 due to technical reasons.

Travel agents in Gibraltar said they had stopped selling tickets for the airline which, ironically, had promised to start a new service between Gibraltar and Bercelona on Friday, the day when details of their financial problems emerged.
- 27.03.2010.