BELGRADE: Serbia’s new national airline, Air Serbia, began flying yesterday with a plane named after favourite son Novak Djokovic, the men’s tennis world number two. The Airbus A319, emblazoned with a double-headed eagle and Serbia’s national red, blue and white colours, took off for Abu Dhabi. Air Serbia said all its future planes would be named after prominent Serb figures. The airline was formed in August, when the Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways acquired 49 percent in Serbia’s sole air carrier JAT. Etihad has been awarded a five-year contract to manage the carrier. Earlier, Etihad’s chief James Hogan said the company’s first 10 new planes will also be A319s, part of Airbus’s family of single-aisle medium-haul aircraft that can carry 124 passengers in its normal configuration. JAT has a fleet of 14 planes, 10 Boeing 737-300s and four ATR 72-200s, all of which are around 20 years old. Etihad holds equity investments in Airberlin, Air Seychelles, Virgin Australia, Aer Lingus and Jet Airways.
Sonatrach discovers oil field in Algeria
ALGIERS: Algeria’s national energy firm Sonatrach has discovered a major oil field with almost 1.3 billion barrels of deposits in the south of the country, Energy Minister Youcef Yousfi announced yesterday. The find near Amguid Messaoud is “one of the most important that Sonatrach has made in the past 20 years,” he told the national news agency APS during a visit to the site. The discovery was made 112km from Hassi Messaoud, the largest oil field in Algeria. Yousfi said Sonatrach would have to use non-conventional methods to extract oil from the new field.
Ireland building 40MW wind farm
Dublin: The Irish Energy and Natural Resources Minister has said that his country is now constructing a 40-megawatt wind farm in central Ireland that will help the country move closer to its renewable energy targets. ‘Ireland has a challenging European Union renewable energy target to meet by 2020, which includes meeting 40 percent of electricity demand from renewable sources,’ Energy and Natural Resources Minister Pat Rabbitte said. Agencies