Wednesday, January 16, 2013

► COMOROS: Government now looking to resurrect Air Comores?

ComorosAfter the successful launch of inter-island services last week using a Let 410 (MSN 072640 | D6-NHD), the Comorian Government is now considering resurrecting defunct national carrier Air Comores.

Speaking on the necessity of air travel in the island chain that is the Comores,  President of Comoros Ikililou Dhoinine noted that the country had experienced numerous difficulties in the past regarding safe, reliable air transport:
"The country has experienced enormous difficulties concerning air transport, difficulties which have always been at the centre of our concerns," said Mr Dhoinine. "Today everyone knows the difficulties that we encounter in the inter-island air transportation; a lack of aircraft. We previously used 9 and 13 seater aircraft which proved insufficient. We then thought of acquiring two 19-seaters. We express our great satisfaction and hope this aircraft (the Let 410) will be useful to the country and it is one of the first aircraft that will constitute the national airline of the Comoros because our country needs more aircraft to provide permanent and safe inter-island transport, both regionally and internationally."
Source [ComoresOnline]

The remains of Air Comores lone F27 in Moroni
The remains of Air Comores' lone F27 (ATI)
Air Comores was founded in the 50s by Yves Lebret, one of the last great pioneers of aviation in the Indian Ocean, who died in May 2002. In 1963 Air Comores Ltd became Air Comores SA, owned equally by Air France and the Comorian government. The carrier was then nationalized in 1974 by President Ahmed Abdallah,  becoming Air Comores, Société Nationale Air Transport. In addition to the islands of the archipelago, it served Dar es Salaam, Mombasa and Antananarivo with three DC-4s.

At its height, Air Comores operated a Fokker F27 (MSN 10203 | D6-CAI) with flights from Moroni to Moheli and Anjouan (as domestic routes) with Dzaoudzi (Mayotte), Mahajunga (Madagascar) and occasionally Zanzibar and Dar-Es-Salaam, Tanzania.

After the early 90s, the airline passed from one owner's hands to another before eventually ceasing operations in 1997.