MAT Macedonian Airlines
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|Ceased operations||1 September 2009|
|Operating bases||Ohrid Airport|
|Headquarters||Skopje, Republic of North Macedonia|
|Key people||Zlatko Petrovski (President)|
MAT Macedonian Airlines (Macedonian: Македонски Авиотранспорт (МАТ), tr: Makedonski Aviotransport (MAT)) was the national flag carrier airline of the Republic of Macedonia (now North Macedonia). It operated scheduled services between Skopje and Ohrid and several destinations in Europe. It was based in Skopje with its main base at Skopje International Airport.
In 2000 the Government of the Republic of Macedonia signed an agreement with MAT that gave MAT the status of National flag carrier for the following 10 years. MAT Macedonian Air Transport is a share holding private Company, owned by two major stockholders.
In 2007 MAT introduced electronic tickets available for purchase over the internet.
Final years (2008-2009)
On 31 October 2008, MAT received its first Boeing 737-500. The aircraft had 126 seats divided in two cabin classes (business and economy) and 4 tons capacity for baggage and cargo. The registration of the aircraft was Z3-AAH and it carried MAT traditional colors.
In December 2008, the airline was forced to give up its services from Skopje to Berlin, Düsseldorf, Hamburg and Rome after Eurocontrol banned the carrier from entering German and Italian airspace because of unpaid air traffic control fees from the period 1999 to 2005.
MAT Airlines was also banned from Greek airspace, because of the Macedonia naming dispute. In 2009, the Greek and Macedonian states agreed on their aircraft entering each other's airspace, but Macedonian registered aircraft could not land in any Greek airports.
In 2009, MAT dismissed 70 of 180 employees and changed its airplanes to reduce costs.
On 14 May 2009, a Boeing 737-500 was grounded by Macedonian CAA and stored at Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport until 4 July 2009.
On 1 September 2009, MAT Macedonian Airlines lost its Air Operators Certificate (AOC).
Planned takeover by Jat
MAT Macedonian Airlines and Jat Airways signed the Intention agreement on finding the best business solution for the future cooperation between the two national carriers of Macedonia and Serbia. Both companies stated that the interest is shown for establishing various forms of cooperation, from technical to commercial.
In the year 2008 Alexander The Great Airport provided service to more than 660.000 passengers while MAT served 37 per cent on the flights to Zurich, Vienna, Düsseldorf, Rome, Istanbul, Hamburg, Berlin and Amsterdam and Jat served 10 per cent. By improving the companies’ partnership, services for the Macedonian passengers will gain additional possibilities.
The agreement was signed in Belgrade by Jat Acting Director General Sasa Vlaisavljevic and the president of MAT's Board of Directors, Zlatko Petrovski.
Despite MAT recently being grounded by aviation authorities in Macedonia, Jat's CEO has confirmed that the Serbian carrier will take over shares and revive the national Macedonian carrier. Jat's team of legal experts are currently in Skopje where they are checking MAT's legal and financial documentation. These checks should be complete within a week. The findings will be presented to Jat's management board, after which, the Serbian carrier will send MAT a proposal whether it will take over a majority of shares (over 50%) or less than 50% of shares. The documentation checks have taken longer than expected because MAT did not immediately provide all the necessary paperwork. Also, Jat's legal team requested more information regarding MAT's financial reports. Jat's CEO confirmed that MAT has extreme debt but declined to comment further. He stated that Jat is primarily interested in the Macedonian aviation market which is covered 35% by MAT, while Jat has a share of 10% in the market. “We are also interested in commencing flights from Belgrade and Skopje to Priština through MAT”, Saša Vlaisavljević, the airline's CEO says. Jat is currently banned from flying to Priština due to the unresolved status of Kosovo in which Priština is located.
MAT Macedonian Airlines operated the following service (at May 2009):
- Czech Republic -Prague
- Denmark -Copenhagen
- Germany - Berlin-Tegel, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Stuttgart, Karlsruhe
- Hungary -Budapest
- Italy - Rome-Fiumicino, Milan,
- Luxembourg - Luxembourg
- Spain - Madrid, Palma de Mallorca
- Sweden - Gothenburg. Stockholm
- Switzerland -Geneva, Zurich
- Turkey -Istanbul
The MAT Macedonian Airlines fleet included the following aircraft (at 1 September 2009):
|Boeing 737-500||1||126||Sold to MAT Airways in 2010|
The average age of the MAT Macedonian Airlines fleet was 17.8 years (at 1 September 2009).
- Boeing 737-200 (3)
- Boeing 737-300 (4)
- Boeing 737-400
- Boeing 737-500
- McDonnell Douglas DC-9 (3)
- Yakovlev Yak-42
- CRJ-900 (1)
- Tupolev Tu-154 (1)
- "MAT Macedonian Airlines Fleet Details and History". Planespotters.net.
- "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 2007-04-10. p. 46.
- "Pearl destination - Ohrid lake". Airline Tribute to Macedonia. 4 January 2019. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "MAT Macedonian Airlines banned from German and Italian airspace". Balkantravellers.com. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "Greece partially lifts flight ban". Exyuaviation.com. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "Vest newspaper". Vest.com.mk. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "Jat: MAT takeover imminent". Exyuaviation.com. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "MAT MAcedonian Airlines Fleet". Ch-aviation.ch. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "Fleet age MAT Macedonian - Airfleets aviation". Airfleets.net. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "MAT Macedonian Airlines". Rzjets.com. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to MAT Macedonian Airlines.|