ZimLive reports that Malaysian Airlines has repossessed four planes which had been sold to Zimbabwe Airways, the ill-fated Air Zimbabwe proxy.
Two of the planes, bearing registration 9M-MRL and 9M-MRM are in the United States, in Kansas in the state of Missouri.
The other two, 9M-MRQ and 9M-MRP, only conducted test flights in 2017 and remain in Malaysia.
According to ZimLive sources, the planes’ repossession has resulted in massive losses to Zimbabwe. Said the source:
Here’s how aviation purchases are structured. One, you have the seller; two you have the buyer; three you have the seller’s bank; four you have the buyer’s bank and five you have the owner.
In the case of these four planes, Zimbabwe negotiated directly with the seller only to be referred to number three (seller’s bank).
Once the Zimbabwe government made a payment for two planes that you see branded and made a commitment for the other two, they were then removed from the sales portal.
But months down the line the Zimbabweans failed to collect what they had paid for. They failed to pay the balance after the commitment fees.
The government of Zimbabwe wanted the planes delivered to Harare, I’m not sure what changed. What has happened though is that the planes were eventually all repossessed.