NJI grounds 737s, suspends two routes

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UK-based Aviation Partners Worldwide (APW) announced today that its regional airline subsidiary National Jet Italia (NJI) is suspending two of its routes and grounding two aircraft as a result of the events of 11 September.

It indicates that further moves at the British Airways-franchised carrier are likely.

In a statement the company says: “The board of APW are considering all the implications of the current exceptional situation for the structure, financing and operations of the group, and a further announcement will be made as soon as possible.”

NJI is suspending routes from its base at Rome Fiumicino Leonardo Da Vinci airport to Nice and Athens as well as grounding its two Boeing 737-400s.

The Italian regional will also suspend its services to Milan Linate but says that that move is not connected to the current market downturn but was likely anyway because of its poor slot times at the airport. It is still looking for better slots.

NJI is also revising its long-term expansion plans and says it will concentrate on the Italian market.

The airline also operates from Rome to Palermo and Catania and plans to start a thrice-daily service to Genoa and Verona. Besides the narrowbodies the airline operate a fleet of four British Aerospace BAe 146-300s, which it owns.

APW closed the deal to acquire NJI in August this year, buying the 80.4% held by Netherlands-based investment company Magitbay Holdings and BAE Systems’ 19.65%. NJI began operations last year founded by entrepreneur Warren Seymour who successfully launched National Jet Systems of Australia.