Tuesday, June 11, 2013

■ NAMIBIA: Theo Namases blames NAC for holding back Air Namibia.

Air NamibiaTheo Namases, the Managing Director of Air Namibia (SW), says a lack of collaboration between the airline and fellow parastatal, the Namibia Airport Company (NAC), is adversely affecting the former's operations.

■ RÉUNION: Air Austral sees overall losses for FY2012/13 drop by 40%.

Air Austral
La Réunion's Air Austral (UU) has announced a turnaround in its fortunes, roughly one year on from the appointment of Mr Marie-Joseph Malé as new CEO of the company. For its 2012/13 Financial Year which ended on March 31, the carrier posted losses of USD35.8million (EUR27.06million), an improvement of  40%  on last year's numbers (USD50.8million loss).

► BRAZIL: Royal Air Maroc to return to Brazil from mid December.

Royal Air Maroc RAMMorocco's national carrier, Royal Air Maroc (AT) is set to join the growing number of African carriers jostling for a share of the growing South America - Africa market when it resumes flights to Brazil from December this year. Swiss aviation newswire, ch-aviation, reports that flights from Casablanca to Sao Paolo will operate 3x weekly using a 767-300ER effective 20 December.

Monday, June 10, 2013

► MALAWI: See Video of Proflight Zambia's inaugural Lusaka - Lilongwe flight.

Proflight ZambiaProflight Zambia (P0) débutted its regional operations with direct Lusaka to Lilongwe, Malawi flights on Tuesday June 4. According to the airline, the return flight is timed so that it can provide smooth connections to Emirates (EK) daily service from Harare to Dubai via Lusaka. Flights will initially operate with Proflight’s 29-seater Jetstream 41 aircraft.

► TUNISIA: Tunisair believed to have cancelled its order for three A350-800s.

TunisairTunisia's national carrier, Tunisair (TU), has apparently backed out of plans to acquire three Airbus A350-800s, the shortest fuselage version in Airbus' new A350 XWB family of mid-sized widebody airliners, after the European aircraft manufacturer failed to list the order in its May 2013 orders summary.

► SINGAPORE: Ethiopian seeks closer ties with Singapore Airlines as means of entering Australian market.

Ethiopian Airlines (ET) is eyeing closer ties with fellow Star Alliance carrier, Singapore Airlines (SQ), as a means of entering the Australian market, airline CEO, Tewolde Gebremariam has disclosed.

■ TANZANIA: Precision Air announces operational review; Harare flights to begin "shortly".

Precision Air Tanzanian operator, Precision Air (PW), has announced it is in the process of reviewing its operational 5-year plan as part of its expansion and business review. According to CEO, Sauda Rajab, her airline intends to review its operational and fleet expansion measures while reassessing its current position on the Tanzanian and regional markets.

■ SOUTH AFRICA: Comair Ltd forecasts 20% rise in earnings for this year as fastjet may face more launch obstacles.

Comair LtdSouth African aviation group, Comair Ltd, the parent company of both kulula.com (MN) and its British Airways-franchise, BA Comair, says it expects its headline earnings and earnings per share for the first nine months of the year to June 2013 to be over 20% higher than last year, but did not, however, quantify the extent of its results.

■ EGYPT: Egyptair's losses to narrow by 57% during this financial year; EHCAAN's profits to rise 15% - El-Maadawy.

EgyptairEgyptian Minister of Civil Aviation, Engineer Wael El-Maadawy, has announced that Egyptian national carrier, EgyptAir (MS), is expected to see an improvement in its business climate with losses for the current 2012/13 fiscal year decreasing 57% compared to last year. Additionally, the Egyptian Holding Company for Airports and Air Navigation (EHCAAN) is expected to see a 15% rise in its profits on the back of the increased use of Egyptian airports as transit points.

► MALAWI: Rejuvenated Air Malawi due back in the skies before June 30.

Air MalawiFollowing the finalization of modalities, a revitalized Air Malawi (QM) operating in conjunction with Ethiopian Airlines is due to begin operations by the end of this month (June), Malawian Minister of Transport and Public Works, Sidik Mia, has disclosed.

Friday, June 7, 2013

► TANZANIA: Flightlink to begin Embraer E120 ops from July.

Flightlink Tanzania logoTanzanian scheduled operator Flightlink will début its first, and Tanzania's first, Embraer E120ER operations with effect from July 1.

► SEYCHELLES: Air Austral axes Réunion - Mahé flights from June.

Air AustralAs part of its route rationalization initiative, Réunion-based carrier, Air Austral (UU), will terminate its now weekly St. Denis de la Reunion – Seychelles service with effect from June 5.

■ CANADA: Bombardier sees strong African market potential for its CSeries twinjets.

BombardierCanadian aircraft manufacturer, Bombardier, foresees strong growth potential for its nascent CSeries Regional Jet on the African market despite no continental carriers showing any interest in the type as yet. 

■ UNITED KINGDOM: IBA Group aims to help Africa fully exploit its markets.

Following the conclusion of the 69th IATA AGM, the International Bureau of Aviation, IBA Group, an organization established in 1988 to provide independent expert business analysis and advice to the aviation industry, says it will be looking closely at the developing opportunities arising from the exponential growth and profit reported within the African aviation industry.

■ CONGO (KINSHASA): Ethiopian to establish its Central Africa hub in Kinshasa - Gebremariam.

In a continuation of our previous post that speculated on a potential hub being established in either Congo Brazzaville or Congo Kinshasa, Ethiopian Airlines CEO has gone on record as saying his airline will establish its Central African hub in Kinshasa.

► GHANA: Virgin Atlantic axes Heathrow - Accra from late September.

Virgin logo
AirlineRoute reports that British carrier Virgin Atlantic (VS) is to abandon its five-times weekly service from London Heathrow to Accra, Ghana with effect from September 23. Should the move be confirmed, it would leave Virgin's Africa network at being just Johannesburg, Cape Town and Lagos following its withdrawal from Nairobi, Kenya last year.

► ZIMBABWE: An A380 for Air Zimbabwe?

Air ZimbabweIn what could be described as the African aviation news story of the year, (that is, if it is proven to be true), Air Zimbabwe (UM) has now announced that it is in talks with undisclosed firms regarding the possible acquisition of an Airbus A380 for use on its pending resumption of flights to London Gatwick.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

► SOUTH AFRICA: Domestic operator, Freedom Air, débuts scheduled ops to Limpopo and Kwazulu.

Freedom Air logoSouth African domestic operator, Freedom Air, has débutted its first scheduled flights. Based out of Pretoria's Wonderboom Airport, Freedom Air now offers flights between Johannesburg (Grand Central), Newcastle, Durban (Virginia) and Venetia Mine in Limpopo Province using a Dornier 228.

■ ANGOLA: Cabinda Airport to be upgraded in 2014/15 - da Silva Tomás.

ENANAThe airport of Cabinda, in the Cabinda province, an exclave of Angola, will be rehabilitated during 2014/15 as part of the country's ongoing infrastructural repair and improvement program undertaken by the country's airport and air traffic authority Empresa Nacional de Aeroportos e Navegação Aérea (ENANA).

■ SOUTH AFRICA: ACSA gives go-ahead for $7billion 10-year strategic investment plan.

The Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) has approved a 10-year strategic business plan that makes provision for infrastructural upgrades and investments worth USD7billion (ZAR70billion), of which ZAR20billion will be used for refurbishments and maintenance while ZAR50billion will be used to create new capacity at South Africa’s nine major airports.