The flag carrier of Serbia, Air Serbia, had fully paid its entire loan of $57.62 million to Etihad Airways Partners.

The airline announced that it has fulfilled its whole liabilities for Etihad Airways Partners I BV (EA Partners I) and paid up the whole amount of the debt on September 29, 2020. The EA Partners I is one of two international financing platforms set up to fund Etihad Airways equity alliance partners, such as Air Serbia.

„The Serbian national airline expresses great satisfaction with the fact that it managed to provide the funds for the payment of liabilities independently, thanks to responsibly running its business before the coronavirus pandemic, as well as extensive austerity measures at all levels during the greatest crisis in the history of civil aviation, resulting from the pandemic,“ stated Duncan Naysmith, the CEO of Air Serbia, in the press release.

„Despite these circumstances and the fact that it could not operate commercial passenger flights from mid-March to the second half of May, the company has continued to regularly settle all its obligations towards creditors and suppliers at home and abroad,“ Naysmith added.

Air Serbia took a long-term loan out from EA Partners I in 2015. 

In July 2020, the airline announced that it possibly would not be able to fulfil its obligations and repay the debt in 2020. The carrier asked the EA Partners to reduce the debt, but the lender rejected the request.

Despite getting rid of one debt, Air Serbia has another outstanding obligation left for the EA Partners. The air carrier has an additional $63 million loan to pay off until June 2021.

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Middle East cargo airlines are about to fight in a battle for COVID-19 vaccine delivery in the near future. On the same day of September 28, 2020, Etihad Cargo as well as Qatar Airways Cargo both announced launching new products and signing agreements related to the coming COVID-19 vaccine delivery flood.