On Wednesday, the flagship carrier of the Maldives, Maldivian receives the delivery of the carrier’s first ATR 72-600s which landed at Velana International Airport (VIA) yesterday. The brand-new ATRs were received with a water salute. Another ATR 42-600 series next-generation turboprop is also set to be delivered within the month. The two ATR 72-600s were flown in from Toulouse, France as part of an agreement between the aircraft manufacturer ATR and Maldivian.
The three aircraft were initially planned to join the fleet in last year’s October however, were postponed due to manufacturing delays. The total acquisition is reported to have cost USD 60 million to the airline. The new carriers will replace the national airlines’ ageing models of Dash8s and provide more connectivity to passengers via affordable and sustainable means.
The ATR 72-600s are equipped with PW127XT engines which offer 20% lower maintenance costs and a 3% reduction in fuel consumption compared to ATR’s previous version engines. The engines are also compatible with 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel, paving way for carbon emission-free emissions and conscious travel experiences in the future.
Managing Director of Maldivian, Mohamed Mihad remarked “Operating in an environment like the Maldives is a matter of offering quick access to essential services to local communities, contributing to the archipelago’s economic development, boosting tourism – and all of this with sustainability at heart. When flying onboard our latest generation ATR turboprops, our passengers will benefit from the best of both worlds: the convenience and comfort of air travel and the guarantee of the lowest emission regional aircraft on the market.”
The CEO of ATR, Nathalie Tarnaud Laude stated” ATR aircraft have a proven track record in terms of connecting islands affordably and sustainably in many regions of the world. We will be supporting Maldivian in their sustainable development throughout the years with the latest technology to further enhance their operations whilst fulfilling their sustainability pledges. We are as much committed as Maldivian in contributing to the industry’s net-zero carbon emissions 2050 target.”