Southern Winds is to debut as an international rival to Aerolineas Argentinas. The six-year-old carrier won several overseas routes last September after the international monopoly held by Aerolineas came to its scheduled end.

Now Juan Maggio, the domestic carrier's chief executive, is busy negotiating leases for long-range jets to launch these new services, starting with the USA and Spain. Maggio says the environment is very favourable for a lessee, with manufacturers, lessors, and other airlines all anxious to make deals for their excess aircraft. One result of this buyer's market is his decision to switch plans from new Airbus A340s to used Boeing 767s.

Once Maggio has inked leases for an international fleet, Southern Winds will apply to the USA and Spain for foreign operating certificates. Later plans call for flights to Mexico and within South America. Maggio does not seem awed by the transition from domestic operations with a fleet of regional jets and turboprops to international flights.

Source: Airline Business