Tuesday, May 14, 2013

■ MOZAMBIQUE: Brazil set to ratify new bill to enable resumption of flights to Mozambique.

Brazil and Mozambique could soon resume direct flights should Brazilian president, Dilma Youseff, consent to a bill already passed by the Brazilian Committee on Foreign Relations and the National Defense of Congress regarding the establishment of commercial flights between the South American country and Mozambique. 

According to a report by Radio Moçambique, under the proposed Bilateral Air Services Agreement, airlines designated by the two countries may trade services using the code-share arrangements and other forms of joint operation.

The rapporteur of the committee, Mr Luiz Alberto, advocated the adoption of the proposal, arguing that the agreement will strengthen the socio-cultural exchange and trade between the two countries.
It is important to consider this given Mozambique’s relevance as a nation whose population speaks Portuguese, a country that joined the Community of Portuguese Language Countries and with which Brazil has sought cooperation within the context of new Brazilian foreign policy initiatives toward Africa,” he added.
Varig in Cape Town in the 90s
Varig in Cape Town in the 90s (JSaayman)
LAM Mozambique's (TM) CEO, Marlene Manave, disclosed that Lisbon (Portugal), Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and even possibly China are amongst the most likely international routes her airline is considering, given those nations' high level of participation in the fast growing Mozambican economy. Brazil in particular, as a fellow Lusophone country, has significant interests in the country both in mining and construction.

Varig (RG) operated flights to Mozambique for a brief period in the 1970s and 80s, which despite being uneconomical to operate, were considered strategic in the eyes of the then military junta in power. Once democracy was restored, all of Varig's African flights - Luanda, Maputo, Lagos, Abidjan and Dakar - were dropped with the exception of Johannesburg, which was retained until the carrier went under.