Uproar in Argentina #AvMRO

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We’ve reported on maintenance facilities abruptly closing due to bankruptcy or financial duress, but LAN Argentina was notified by an Argentina government agency on Aug. 20 that it had 10 days to vacate its hangar at Aeroparque Jorge Newbery airport in Buenos Aires--despite that it has a lease and pays $20,000 in monthly rent. There are no bad finances involved in this one--and LAN officials apparently didn’t have any forewarning of the hangar eviction.

An airline source, however, is optimistic that the government airport authority ORSNA will retract its demand before the deadline.

Part of the optimistic outlook comes from the fact that mechanic, pilot and flight attendant unions within Argentina are supporting LAN Argentina by threatening to strike on Friday if the hangar situation isn’t resolved. Keep in mind those unions represent not only LAN Argentina but also state-owned Aerolineas Argentinas, which is losing money.

This labor solidarity over the eviction notice clearly is sending a strong message to President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner’s government.

We’ll know by the end of the week the message’s impact.

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