Sunday, October 7, 2012

► SPAIN: CEIBA Intercontinental starts Malabo - Madrid flights.

CEIBA Intercontinental
Since transferring its sole Boeing 777-200LR (MSN 40668| CS-TQX) onto the registry of Portuguese airline White Airways, Equatoguinean national carrier CEIBA Intercontinental (C2) has now been able to launch a 3x weekly service between Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, and Madrid, Spain, effective 4 October 2012.

CEIBA Intercontinental (C2): Malabo, Equatorial Guinea - Madrid, Spain
-Effective 4 October 2012
  • C2500 SSG  1100 - 1800 MAD 777 | 246
  • C2501 MAD 2100 - 0200+1 SSG 777 | 246

Source [Amadeus]

On-board the carrier's inaugural flight were Equatorial Guinea's Deputy Minister Responsible for Civil Aviation, Fausto Abeso, Minister of Information, Press and Radio, Agustin Nze Nfumu, the Director of CEIBA, Santiago Nsobeya, and a large group of journalists and company professionals.

CEIBA Intercontinetal 777 at Madrid
CEIBA's 777 at Madrid Barajas (aena)
After arriving in Madrid, CEIBA's representative in Spain, Gregorio Manzano, said that while it is still "too early" for passenger load forecasts on the new route, cargo will be very important to Malabo and Equatorial Guinea and is be at 150 (sic) tonnes per year. Additionally, Civil Aviation Minister, Fausto Abeso, requested assistance from Spain's Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) in helping the carrier get on its feet in relation to safety and punctuality through an agreement for employee training and technology transfer that is deemed necessary for the airline to continue to grow and for the country to become a gateway to Europe through Madrid.

Above all however, the introduction of the flights is aimed at addressing steep air-ticket prices into Malabo:
"On June 4, the official presentation of the Boeing 777 held in Malabo, the Head of State, Obiang Nguema Mbasogo recalled the importance of the national airline Ceiba in providing transcontinental flights with competitive characteristics, which could help to improve air transport prices, something that is of great need, more pressing, at the time of economic expansion in Equatorial Guinea."
Source [Equatorial Guinea Press Office]

Mention of possible flights to the Americas was also made, though no specific destinations were discussed.