The Federation government of Bosnia and Herzegovina has until today, Friday, February 27, to deposit just over 510.000 euros to the asset company HETA, from which B&H Airlines is financially leasing its fleet of two ATR 72 aircraft. The airline has outstanding debt of 8.1 million euros towards HETA. The asset company, which has frozen B&H’s accounts, has given the government until tomorrow to make a deposit in order to start talks on reprogramming B&H’s debt. However, the Federation government failed to discuss the issue at yesterday’s weekly meeting in Mostar. B&H’s ten-year financial lease of the two turboprops expires this May.
Under the current circumstances, HETA and the other leasing party, the Hypo Alpe Adria Bank, are unlikely to extend the arrangement. One of B&H’s ATR 72 aircraft is currently grounded in Germany, where it underwent maintenance, but is unable to return to Sarajevo due to money owed to the maintenance company. The operating ATR is scheduled to undergo maintenance checks in late March, which could ground the airline if the other aircraft does not return to Sarajevo beforehand. The airline has already temporarily suspended flights to Belgrade and has been cancelling its services to Copenhagen, while flights to Zurich are still being maintained.