| 21.10,17. 06:15 AM |
Malaysia has entered into a ‘no find, no fee’ arrangement with Ocean Infinity to find MH370
Fugro Discovery encounters rough weather in the search for MH370 last year. Picture: ATSB/Chris StraddonSource:Supplied
MALAYSIA has entered into a “no find, no fee” arrangement with Ocean Infinity in a bid to recover the missing MH370 plane and discover the fate of the 239 people on board.
Australia’s Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester acknowledged the agreement between the Malaysian government and the US- based seabed exploration company.
“The Malaysian Government has accepted an offer from Ocean Infinity to search for the missing plane, entering into a ‘no find no fee’ arrangement,” the MP said in a statement.
Australia will provide technical assistance at the request of the Malaysian government.
Flight MH370 vanished on March 8, 2014, on the way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, with 239 people on board.
Its disappearance is one of the world’s greatest aviation mysteries, and sparked the largest ever search, costing about $200 million.
The Australian-led search for the aircraft was suspended in January, much to the anguish of distraught relatives.
Mr Chester said he was hopeful but did not want to raise the “hopes for the loved ones of those on board.” At the time it was suspended, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau released findings from international and CSIRO scientists which identified a smaller 25,000sq km area with “a high probability” that it contained the aircraft.
“Ocean Infinity will focus on that part of the sea floor,” Mr Chester said.
Two Australian women who lost their husbands had earlier told AAP they were excited to hear the search might resume.
Melbourne woman Jennifer Chong, whose husband and the father of her two sons, Chong Ling Tan was on the flight, said she and other relatives had been working for the search to be re-started.
Mother of two Danica Weeks, who lost her husband Paul on the plane, said she was initially physically shaking with joy and felt a “weight lifted” when she read the search might resume.
Ms Weeks and Ms Chong separately sued the airline as a result of the deaths of their husbands.
“We won’t be deciding anything now on whether we are embarking on a new search or not,” Liow told reporters on the sidelines of an event in Kuala Lumpur.
“We have to discuss with the companies. It will take some time as it’s some detailed discussions,” he said.