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Inmarsat to provide free tracking service after missing MH370

A member of staff at satellite communications company Inmarsat works in front of a screen showing subscribers using their service throughout
A member of staff at satellite communications company Inmarsat works in front of a screen showing subscribers using their service throughout

LONDON (Reuters) - Inmarsat, the firm whose satellites helped track the final route of missing Malaysian Airlines airliner MH370, confirmed that it would offer a free, basic tracking service to passenger airlines globally.

The company said on Monday that the service would be offered to all 11,000 commercial passenger aircraft which are already equipped with Inmarsat satellite connection, comprising virtually 100 percent of the world's long haul commercial fleet.

"In the wake of the loss of MH370, we believe this is simply the right thing to do," Chief Executive Rupert Pearce said.

"This offer responsibly, quickly and at little or no cost to the industry, addresses in part the problem brought to light by the recent tragic events around MH370."

It said at its results last week that it would make available free data transfers for a position reporting service.

The Malaysian Airlines jet lost contact with air traffic controllers on March 8 and data from Inmarsat's satellite network was analyzed to deduce the airliner's flight path.

(Reporting by Brenda Goh)

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