Thursday, June 13 2024 13:25
Alexandr Avanesov

Fly Arna staff demand salaries

Fly Arna staff demand salaries

ArmInfo. Employees of the national air carrier of Armenia, Fly Arna, which ceased operations on March 16 of this year, are demanding payment of arrears of wages.

In a statement received by ArmInfo from airline employees, it is  noted that in a short period of its activity, Fly Arna managed to win  the trust of passengers, showing high performance in a number of  areas. It became the only Armenian airline that successfully passed  the operational safety audit of the International Air Transport  Association (IATA) and received the corresponding certificate. Over  the entire period of operation of the aircraft fleet, the OTP (On  Time Performance) indicator of the airline's scheduled flights was  95-98%.

However, for unknown reasons, a decision was made to terminate the  airline's activities. On January 16, Fly Arna made its last flight,  and already on March 19, airline employees received notification that  the airline was suspending its operations. Guided by paragraph 1 of  part 1 of Article 113 and paragraph 1 of Article 115 of the RA Labor  Code, the airline informed employees that on May 19, the contracts  signed between Fly Arna and employees would be terminated. At the  same time, based on paragraph 1 of Article 129 of the Civil Code of  the Republic of Armenia, the airline undertook to pay severance pay  in the amount of the average monthly salary. However, despite the  above, the airline's employees' salaries for April and May, as well  as severance pay, were never paid. Employees have repeatedly  contacted the Armenian State Interest Fund (ANIF) and Air Arabia OJSC  as the company that manages the Fly Arna airline, which are  shareholders of the airline. During May, employees visited ANIF 3  times, meeting with the temporary head of the company, Tigran  Ghazaryan. During the meetings, it was promised to ensure a solution  to the issue.  In May, employees visited the RA Ministry of Economy,  where they met with Deputy Minister Narek Teryan, who also promised  to report on the development of the situation on the same day. The  employees sent letters to the management of Air Arabia, the airline  that operates Fly Arna. In response letters, representatives of Air  Arabia suggested contacting ANIF, since they no longer have the  authority to act on behalf of the airline. In another letter, a  representative of Air Arabia said that ANIF has consistently failed  to find a solution and has not agreed to the proposed liquidation  scheme for the company.

On June 3, airline employees sent a letter to the Prime Minister of  the Republic of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan, but the letter was forwarded  to the State Property Management Committee, from which there is still  no response.

"At the same time, each side invents its own reasons, noting that the  solution to the issue depends on the other side. As a result, the  families of more than 80 employees are currently in a situation of  financial crisis, having many bank obligations. We consider it  appropriate to note that the airline had a team of professionals in  the field of aviation, which worked diligently to create a national  air carrier. We also consider such irresponsible treatment of  citizens of the Republic of Armenia by a company that has the status  of a state national air carrier to be unacceptable," the airline's  employees said in a statement.

Earlier the Deputy Minister of Territorial Administration and  Infrastructure of the Republic of Armenia Armen Simonyan stated that  the Fly Arna airline had suspended its activities in the air  transportation market for financial reasons. Meanwhile, as a source  in Fly Arna previously reported to ArmInfo, the airline decided to  leave the Armenian air transportation market due to the failure of  the Armenian side to fulfill the terms of the agreement on the  creation of the airline, one of which was the subsidization of  passenger transportation by the RA government. Let us recall that  previously the Deputy Minister of Territorial Management and  Infrastructure of the Republic of Armenia Armen Simonyan stated that  Fly Arna airline suspended its activities in the air transportation  market for financial reasons. Meanwhile, as a source in Fly Arna  previously reported to ArmInfo, the airline decided to leave the  Armenian air transportation market due to the failure of the Armenian  side to fulfill the terms of the agreement on the creation of the  airline, one of which was the subsidization of passenger  transportation by the Armenian government.

On December 10, 2021, Armenian National Airlines CJSC received state  registration. The company operated under the Fly Arna - Armenian  National Airlines brand. The project to create a new airline became  known in July 2020, when the then-current executive director of the  State Interests Fund of Armenia, David Papazyan, and the general  executive director of the budget airline based in the Arab city of  Sharjah, Ali al Ali, signed an agreement. Initially, it was known  that the company would operate on a low- cost business model, in  other words, it would be an Armenian low-cost airline (such airlines  offer passengers low prices, but at the same time an incomplete, that  is, not generally accepted, list of services).

On May 23, at a government meeting, a decision was made to dissolve  the Armenian State Interest Fund (ANIF). Until the liquidation  process was completed, management of the fund was transferred to the  State Property Management Committee.

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