BQB Air to launch Asuncion, Cordoba routes

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BQB Air, the Uruguayan regional airline, has announced the launch of new ATR 72-500 operated routes from Montevideo to Asuncion in Paraguay and Cordoba in Argentina.

According to BQB Air, the Asunción route will be launched on 1 September and will be operated on weekdays, except Wednesdays. The Cordoba route, which will feature an intermediate stop at the Uruguayan-Argentinean border town Saltos, is scheduled to be operated on a daily basis and will be launched "as soon as the Argentinean authorities confirm the operation".

Under the Fortaleza treaty, a route to a non-capital destination in the Mercosur region, in theory, needs only to be communicated to the authorities of the countries implied.

However, in recent years, underwriter state Argentina, in a move to protect its loss-making nationalized flag carrier Aerolineas Argentinas, is no longer applying the dispositions of the treaty without formally terminating its membership.

This lack of access to major destinations in Argentina´s interior was considered one of the contributing factors of the bankruptcy of Uruguay´s former national carrier, Pluna, whose business model was based on serving as a hub between Brazil and destinations in Argentina.

Most recently, Argentina did not accept an attempt from BQB Air to establish itself as a successor carrier for Pluna on the Montevideo - Buenos Aires air shuttle corridor.

BQB Air is owned by the Argentinean Lopez Mena family, which also owns the Buquebus travel and ferry group.