Indian low-cost carrier SpiceJet has resolved a dispute with Irish aircraft leasing company Goshawk Aviation and its affiliates, meaning it can add additional Boeing 737 MAX aircraft to its fleet.
The Delhi-based airline said in a stock exchange statement on August 16, 2022, that the settlement relates to two Boeing 737 MAX aircraft and one Boeing 737-800 NG aircraft.
“The parties have agreed to settle all their disputes under and related to the aircraft lease agreements for three aircraft. The agreement, the terms of which are confidential, ends all litigation proceedings between the parties. All proceedings, including before the UK Court and Execution Proceedings before the Delhi High Court will be withdrawn accordingly,” the SpiceJet statement reads.
The dispute between SpiceJet and the lessor ignited in the spring of 2021 after the Irish lessor and its trustees sued the airline for $16.2 million in outstanding liabilities for the lease rentals of those three aircraft, which the carrier had been unable to pay due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic-related air travel restrictions.
The settlement means that SpiceJet will be able to add more planes to its current fleet.
“This will allow the entry into service of two (2) more fuel-efficient Boeing 737 MAX aircraft into our fleet,” SpiceJet said in the statement.
According to Planespotters.com data, as of August 16, 2022, the carrier operates 80 planes, including eight Boeing 737-700s, 24 737-800s, three 737-900ERs, and 32 De Havilland Canada DHC-8-400s, as well as 13 Boeing 737 MAX 8s.
The settlement is good news for SpiceJet, which has come under increased scrutiny from regulators over safety and maintenance procedures. The country’s civil aviation authority therefore limited SpiceJet’s flights over an eight-week period.