Israir is seeking two British Aerospace 146s to enable it to expand its international operations, and has held discussions with the manufacturer.

The Tel Aviv-based private Israeli airline operates three Aero International (Regional)ATR 42s on scheduled domestic flights to Eilat, as well as on charter flights to destinations such as Cyprus. The airline competes with Arkia Israeli Airlines, which has already specified a need for the BAe 146-derived Avro RJ (Flight International, 30 July-7 August).

Israel wants two BAe 146-100s to enable it to meet the requirements of an offer expected to be made by the Israeli ministry of transportation, which will allow an unlimited number of Israeli airlines, which have the necessary aircraft, to operate international charter flights. These will include services to destinations in Bulgaria, Egypt, Greece, the Middle East and Slovakia.

Israir says that negotiations have reached an advanced stage. These will continue later this month when "-we intend to finalise the contract", says Zeev Horn, a shareholder in the airline. BAe Asset Management - Jets confirms that it has been in talks with the carrier, but that there is little or no availability of 146-100s, making a delivery before 1998 unlikely.

Source: Flight International