ST-50 MANUFACTURER Israviation hopes, that the Gulf States could develop into an important market, for the light executive aircraft being developed in Israel.

The optimism follows the 2 September flight of the ST-50 prototype for presentation to King Hussein of Jordan. The king, an enthusiastic pilot, is believed to have been following the progress of the aircraft from the outset.

Israviation president Stephane Juffa says that the one-day visit to Jordan has also helped to establish relations with Arab Wings, a private airline operating executive flights in the Middle East and Gulf regions "They expressed their interest in marketing the aircraft in Arab countries," says Juffa.

Since the prototype ST-50 was recovered from a forced landing caused by an engine failure on 19 May, it has been through a series of test flights. Juffa says that the cause of the Pratt & Whitney Canada PT-6A-137 failure is unclear. "We are sure that certification will be completed next year". He says that the company has firm orders for the ST-50, but refuses to reveal numbers.

Source: Flight International