28 Aug 2010

Stricken airline suspends all flights

3:03 pm on 28 August 2010

One of Mexico's biggest airlines, Mexicana de Aviacion, is to suspend all flights, three weeks after filing for bankruptcy protection.

Transport Minister Juan Molinar said the airline's operations would "definitively cease" by noon local time on Saturday.

The action will also apply to two budget carriers affiliated with Mexicana - Link and Click.

Mexicana had already axed some of its routes and had stopped selling tickets.

The BBC reports the airline flew 220 routes to 65 destinations including London, Madrid, Montreal, Chicago and cities in Central and South America.

The airline, established 89 years ago, has debts of about $US800 million.

It filed for bankruptcy protection after failing to reach a deal with trade unions on cost-cutting.

Mexicana suffered heavy losses during Mexico's recession and an outbreak of swine flu in 2009.