Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Global Impact: Recovery MH Flight 370 Unclear as to How Searching Nations Should Share in Cost

According to The Associated Press, countries searching for the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 have yet to agree on how to share costs, an Australian search leader said Tuesday (June 10).

Malaysian officials were in Canberra to discuss the next phase of the seabed search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 that is thought to have crashed in the southern Indian Ocean on March 8, with 239 passengers and crew on board.

Malaysia is in charge of the search because the Boeing 777 is registered in that country. Yet, Australia is coordinating the search because it is the closest nation to where the jetliner is thought to have crashed. Most of the passengers were Chinese; China is playing an active role in the search. 

COMMENT: "We're still to negotiate the burden-sharing with, for example, Malaysia," Australia's Joint Agency Coordination Center head Angus Houston told Australian Broadcasting Corp. (ABC) television reported.

A seabed search of the most likely crash site, using an unmanned remote controlled submarine, ended last month without finding any trace of the plane.

Australia is contracting private operators to embark on a much larger search using powerful sonar equipment. The new search is expected to take more than eight months.

The Australian government expects to spend 90 million Australian dollars ($84 million) on the search by July 2015. Yet, the actual cost to Australia will depend on how quickly the wreckage can be found and how much other countries are willing to contribute.