Air Saipan has acquired two Boeing 757 aircraft and made an initial investment of 3-million US dollars, as part of an effort to become a full-fledged airline to serve as the Northern Marianas flag carrier.
The Saipan Tribune reports the company's initial investment would rise in the coming weeks as it hopes to pick up passenger traffic from Japan to the CNMI.
Air Saipan's Dave Raybould, says initially they wanted to cover the shortfall in the Japan Airlines pullout by operating charter flights to the CNMI from Japan.
However he says talking to local businesses led them to try to take it a few steps further.
Tourist traffic from Japan has slowed down following the pullout of Japan Airlines' regular flights to Saipan last October.
Once the necessary permits are obtained from the government, Air Saipan will be ready to provide services.