Sunday, March 10, 2013

■ NAMIBIA: Air Namibia settles its bill with Engen; Frankfurt nonstop resumes.

Air NamibiaAir Namibia's (SW) has settled its outstanding debt with fuel supplier, South African based Engen. Fuel bills have continuously hurt the Namibian national carrier's coffers with an estimated 40% of revenue going to fuel related expenses alone.

Air Namibia in Windhoek
Air Namibia in Windhoek (jainnamibia)
Prior to a USD120million bail out from Windhoek last week, Air Namibia had been unable to pay off its estimated USD6.58million (NAD60million) debt, warranting the need for stops in Luanda, Angola en-route to Frankfurt, a detour that had become very unpopular with passengers.
"Air Namibia spokesman, Paulus Nakawa said since last week, the aircraft to Frankfurt had reverted back to its normal departing time of 21:45hrs as it was now re-fueling at the Hosea Kutako International Airport. Before the latest developments, the aircraft to Frankfurt had changed its departure time to 20:00hrs to be on time for its landing slot at the Frankfurt International Airport.

Nakawa said the importance of the Windhoek- Frankfurt route goes beyond Air Namibia as it [route] contributes significantly towards the development and sustainability of tourist arrivals into the country. "

The pilot strike late last year was a contributing factor to Air Namibia's inability to settle the fuel account according to Air Namibia’s managing director Theo Namases.