New MH370 Search Approved as Malaysia Offers $70 Million Reward

by Abel Hampton January 11, 2018, 0:27
New MH370 Search Approved as Malaysia Offers $70 Million Reward

"It is my hope that we will find the answer that we seek for almost four years and bring some closure to this unfortunate incident", Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said at a press conference outside Kuala Lumpur. I thank the Malaysian government for not giving up on us and the MH370, and Ocean Infinity for this initiative to use its technology and own expenses to locate the wreckage. "As we speak, the vessel, Seabed Constructor, is now on her way to the search area, taking advantage of the favorable weather condition in the South Indian Ocean", said Lai, according to an official statement.

Meanwhile, Ocean Infinity chief executive officer Oliver Plunkett said the firm is deploying eight autonomous underwater vehicles for the search, which can roughly cover 1,200 square kilometres per day.

The Malaysian government agreed on Wednesday to pay US seabed exploration firm Ocean Infinity Ltd. from $20 to $70 million on condition that it finds the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 within 90 days.

The plane vanished on March 8 2014 while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people on board.

"It is my hope that we will find the answer that we seek for almost four years and bring some closure to this unfortunate incident", he added.

The payment terms are that $20 million will be paid if the wreckage and flight recorders are found within the first 5,000 sq km; $30 million within an additional 10,000 sq km; $50 million within a further 10,000 sq km and $70 million for search beyond 25,000 sq km.

The governments of Malaysia, Australia and China called off the search in January last year despite protests from the passengers' families, after the A$200 million (S$213 million) hunt which was carried out for more than two years failed to bear fruit. The Australian Transport Safety Bureau's final report on the search conceded that authorities were no closer to knowing the reasons for the plane's disappearance, or its exact location.

Investigators believe MH370 headed south over the Indian Ocean for about six hours before plummeting into the water.

Malaysian Minister of Transport, Liow Tiong Lai, center, speaks during the signing ceremony of the MH370 missing plane search operations between Malaysian government and Ocean Infinity Limited in Putrajaya, Malaysia, Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018.


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