Thursday, June 28, 2012

Emirates boosts flights to Zimbabwe & Zambia Route!

Emirates, one of the world’s fastest growing airlines, underlined its commitment to Zimbabwe and Zambia yesterday by announcing a daily service on the Dubai-Lusaka-Harare route beginning October 1.
The linked service, which currently operates five times a week, has performed strongly since its launch on February 1 this year. To date, Emirates has carried over 43 000 passengers on the route.

In a statement, Jean Luc Grillet, senior vice-president of commercial operations for Africa, said the move was testament to the continuous upward growth in demand for flights to and from the continent.

“A daily flights to Lusaka and Harare will mean greater choice for customers, while an increased cargo capacity of 40% will facilitate more export business opportunities for both countries, forging greater trade links and increasing access to key trading partners in Asia and the Middle East,” he said.

According to Emirates, a weekly cargo capacity of 224 tonnes and access to Emirates’ network of more than 120 destinations worldwide, is already supporting a range of exports from both Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Key commodities being shipped from Lusaka and Harare include fresh flowers, fruit, vegetables and copper mining industry by-products.

Tourism is another key beneficiary, with Emirates’ Zimbabwe service supporting the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority and Tourism ministry targets for increased visitor arrivals to five million by 2015.
It is expected that Emirates flights to the country would support the tourism sector to contribute over $5 billion to the economy by 2015.

The Dubai-Lusaka-Harare route is serviced by an A330-200 aircraft in a three-class configuration, offering 12 luxurious first-class seats, 42 seats in business class and generous space for 183 passengers in economy class.

With a fleet of 175 aircraft and already the largest Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 operator in the world, Emirates currently flies to 123 destinations in 73 countries.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Precision Air has launched its flights to Lusaka, Zambia!

Precision Air has launched its flights to Lusaka, Zambia, becoming the third airline to enter the market this year after Emirates Airline and Royal Dutch KLM.
The airline, which touched down at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport at 13:05 hours on Friday, was characterised by pomp and splendour as it received a water salute amid cheers from senior Government officials, ambassadors and Tanzanians living in Zambia.
Minister of Transport, Communication, Works and Supply Yamfwa Mukanga, who officiated at the launch of the airline in Lusaka, said the development will enhance trade between Zambia and Tanzania as the distance has been cut to two hours from 10 hours.
Despite Zambia and Tanzania being neighbours, businessmen and women travelling to Tanzania had to fly via Nairobi or Ethiopia due to lack of a direct flight.
“Many businessmen especially car traders go to Tanzania and it takes them 10 hours to fly to that country hence delaying business transactions. Every business person knows that time is money and I’m happy that Precision Air helped reduce the distance to Tanzania,” he said.
Mr Mukanga called on the airline to ensure that it remains on the Zambian market unlike some airlines, both local and foreign, which have closed down.
“I hope Precision is not on transit but here for good. We would like to see Precision grow like Kenya and Ethiopian Airways to give customers a variety of choices,” he said.
Mr Mukanga said Zambia has a history of local airlines folding but he is happy that the airline has braved the storms in the industry, adding that Government will support the growth of the airline.
Earlier, Tanzanian High Commissioner to Zambia Grace Mujuma said the airline will strengthen economic ties between the two countries.
At the same occasion, Precision Air chief executive officer Alfonse Kioko said Zambia becomes the 16th destination and is expected to launch flights to Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of Congo next week.
Plans are also underway to launch flights to Lilongwe and Harare outes as well..

Friday, June 22, 2012

Qatar Airways now flying into maputo in southeren africa!

Mozambique (Maputo) — Qatar Airways has announced that from November it will fly into Maputo International Airport three times a week, making it the company's twentieth African destination. The service will be operated by the airlines long-haul Boeing 777 aircraft.
In a press release the company stated, "Mozambique is another example of Qatar Airways' commitment to open up access to destinations that are largely underserved by international airlines and have great market potential".
The airline has recently launched a daily scheduled service from its Doha hub to the Rwandan capital, Kigali.
Next month it will start daily flights to Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, and in August it will begin flying to Mombasa in Kenya. These are in addition to its current routes to Dar es Salaam and Nairobi.They are also considering to start flights to zimbabwe.
According to Qatar Airways Chief Executive Akbar Al Baker, "at Qatar Airways we have a robust planning team that is always busy evaluating and researching potential markets with the underlying mission to open up new destinations that are highly underserved internationally. Whether in Africa, Europe, Asia, Middle East or Americas, we have identified great opportunities where other carriers dare not venture into".
He added, "Mozambique is a great example of a market that we believe has great potential linking up with key feeder markets in Europe, Asia and other parts of the world."
Several other companies fly into Maputo, including the Portuguese airline TAP, Ethiopian Airlines, South African Airways and Kenya Airways.
However, not all airlines have found the route to be profitable. Over the last twelve months Comair and 1Time have dropped their flights on the Johannesburg - Maputo route due to a mixture of high airport taxes in Johannesburg and aviation authorities refusing to allocate favourable flights.