Air Austral now on the right track

Air Austral’s new chairman and CEO, Joseph Bréma, has been speaking about the health of the Indian Ocean island of Reunion’s airline.

Boeing 787

Air Austral Boeing 787. Picture: Air Austral

Having come close to bankruptcy after the global pandemic, France contributed to its rescue by injecting €120-million 2020 and a further €60-million in 2021 - both in the form of guaranteed loans.

Air Austral subsequently won the title of ‘Best Overall Airline’ in Africa at the 2022 ‘APEX Passenger Choice’ awards.

Bréma’s restructuring plan – targeted for completion by 2025 - had previously required the approval both of the State and the European Commission. Initially, Jean-François Carenco, the minister delegate for overseas territories, wanted a merger with French airline Corsair - via a holding company - while keeping the identity of each company.

Ultimately, a consortium of 27 local private investors took 55.18% of the capital of Air Austral. The remaining capital is held by the regional semi-public Sematra company and it’s thanks to this that the airline's debt has been reduced to an estimated €65-million.

Air traffic has indeed resumed at Roland Garros international airport with an increase of 6% compared to 2019. There is also better visibility of Reunion as a destination internationally - and in particular throughout Asia.

Anuradha Deenapanray

Anuradha Deenapanray

Anuradha is a francophone editor for African and Arabian Aerospace magazines.