Advantage Africa – an update on latest travel developments across the Continent

Is the African market finally ready to fulfil its full potential? Will a new more open approach to air connectivity finally open the door to better intra-African connectivity? These are massive questions for a market that the International Air Transport Association (IATA) predicts will see the strongest growth over the next 20 years and will be home to some of the fastest growing individual country markets in terms of passenger demand.

Our regular round-up delivers some of the key aviation and travel news stories from across Africa.

  • Ethiopian Airlines finalises agreements for launch of Chadian national airline
  • Comair develops technology focused company, Nacelle
  • Senegal grants Dakar-Paris traffic rights to Air Senegal, Corsair to suspend own service
  • KCAA may limit number of airlines operating at Nairobi airports
  • Proflight Zambia acquires one Dash 8-300 turboprop
  • ROUTE UPDATE: latest route launches and announcements
  • DATA SNAPSHOT: Africa projected future aircraft deliveries (w/c 27-Aug-2018)

Ethiopian Airlines finalises agreements for launch of Chadian national airline
Ethiopian Airlines has finalised agreements with the Government of Chad to help launch Chad’s new national carrier, scheduled to commence operations on 01-Oct-2018. Ethiopian holds a 49% stake in the joint venture, while the Government of Chad retains 51%. Ethiopian already acquired stakes in the national carriers of Zambia and Guinea and preparations are underway to launch Ethiopian Mozambique Airlines. Group CEO Tewolde GebreMariam says: “The strategic equity partnership in the launching of the new Chad national carrier is part of our Vision 2025 multiple hub strategy in Africa. The new Chad national carrier will serve as a strong hub in Central Africa availing domestic, regional and eventually international air connectivity to the major destinations in the Middle East, Europe and Asia”.


Comair develops technology focused company, Nacelle
Comair (South Africa) has entered a joint venture agreement with Infinea to develop a technology focused company, Nacelle. The parties will distribute the necessary working capital to the company and receive an equal share in profits. Comair CEO Erik Venter says “key commercial” opportunities were transferred to Nacelle, adding: “Like most industries, technology plays a pivotal role in our business. That’s why we’ve decided to spin off our IT budget and team into a separate entity that will provide a variety of IT-related services, which will include the commercialisation of our intellectual property”. Former Comair chief information officer Milk Ilsley will act as COO, while Amanda Mocellin was appointed as CEO. Delani Higgins will act as CFO.


Senegal grants Dakar-Paris traffic rights to Air Senegal, Corsair to suspend own service
Senegal’s Agence Nationale de l’Aviation Civile et de la Météorologie has rescinded the traffic rights for Corsair’s seven times Paris Orly-Dakar service in favour of Air Senegal, which plans to commence Dakar-Paris service with Airbus A330neo aircraft from 01-Feb-2019. Corsair took note of the decision of the Senegalese authorities and says it “regrets to have to suspend” its services after six years of operation.


KCAA may limit number of airlines operating at Nairobi airports
Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) head of corporate planning Henry Ogoye has reportedly advised a freeze on the number of airlines operating at Nairobi Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) and Nairobi Wilson Airport may be forthcoming, in light of the airports’ increasing capacity constraints. Local reports quote Mr Ogoye as stating: “Wilson Airport is seriously congested, JKIA is also becoming congested. We need new airport development to add taxiways and parking bays. There is no point of having so many operators coming in when our airport infrastructure cannot handle them efficiently”.


Proflight Zambia acquires one Dash 8-300 turboprop
Proflight Zambia has purchased a 50 seat Bombardier Dash 8-300 aircraft, which is expected to be delivered from Canada to Zambia “in the next few months”. The purchase forms part of the airline’s strategy to acquire larger aircraft to accommodate more passengers, realise economies of scale and enable more efficient operations. Director of flight operations Gerald Tembo says the new aircraft “will increase Proflight’s capacity and enable us to expand our network of destinations throughout the southern African market”. The new aircraft will also “free up the productive time” of the airline’s single CRJ100 for potential new domestic and regional routes. The carrier is evaluating Dar Es Salaam, Entebbe, Gabon and Johannesburg services. The carrier also operates two Cessna C208 Caravan and three Jetstream 41 aircraft.


Route Updates

  • TAAG Angola Airlines plans to increase Luanda-Maputo frequency from three to five times weekly, effective 30-Oct-2018. The carrier operates the route with Boeing 737-700 equipment.
  • Safarilink plans to launch twice daily Nairobi Wilson-Kisumu service, effective 03-Sep-2018 using 52 seat Bombardier Dash 8 equipment.
  • Edelweiss Air plans to extend seasonal Zurich-Mauritius and Zurich-Seychelles services to operate as year round schedules.
  • Air Tanzania has this week commenced four times weekly Dar Es Salaam-Kilimanjaro-Entebbe and three times weekly Dar Es Salaam-Kigoma-Bujumbura services.
  • AirKenya plans to suspend Diani, Lamu and Malindi services, effective 11-Jan-2019. It plans to add Mara-Kisumu-Entebbe service, subject to regulatory approval, enabling connections with subsidiary AeroLink Uganda.
  • Condor plans to add a weekly Hamburg-Agadir service, launching from 06-Nov-2018.
  • Congo Airways has this month launched a twice weekly Kinshasa-Moanda service using Bombardier Q400 equipment.

  • DATA SNAPSHOT: Africa projected future aircraft deliveries (w/c 27-Aug-2018)Source: CAPA – Centre for Aviation and OAG