For a long time, Mozambique was notoriously tricky when it came to booking flights, but it seems as if the tide is starting to turn.
Bruce Chapman of the Southern Sun Maputo hotel, says the capital city is currently served with five daily flights from Johannesburg and twice weekly from Durban, in addition to new, excellent road infrastructure serving the self-drive market. “We have seen strong growth from EU and US markets, as we are now served by important long-haul carriers with direct flights from their international hubs: TAP from Lisbon, Qatar Airways from Doha, Ethiopian Airlines from Addis Ababa and Kenya Airways from Nairobi. The new international airport has made arrival, immigration and customs slicker, and more comfortable, as well as increased on-time arrival and departure statistics.”
Several airlines have expressed interest, forged partnerships and signed deals to operate flights to various destinations in the country. Earlier this year, Ethiopian Airlines’ regional manager for SA, Abel Alemu, confirmed plans to enter Mozambique’s domestic aviation market. The airline said it intended to operate a B737-800 and three Q-400 aircraft on future domestic routes within Mozambique following the securing of its Air Operator’s Certification from Mozambique’s Civil Aviation Authority.
Another airline that has started looking into potential opportunities in Mozambique is fastjet, which signed an MOU with LAM to explore long-term commercial co-operation. The memorandum covers codeshare and interline agreements between the two carriers, optimised network synergies, as well as co-operation on other commercial systems, such as engineering and maintenance.
Commenting during the signing of the agreement, fastjet CEO, Nico Bezuidenhout, said: “The approach to commercial co-operation is the first of its kind on the African continent. There is significant opportunity in stimulating not only commercial aviation but also up and downstream economic growth through key co-operative initiatives. Fastjet is committed to exploring and leveraging the agreement to the best benefit of both companies and, ultimately, the people of Mozambique.”
In August, Mozambique’s Minister of Transport and Communications, Carlos Mesquita, announced that Maputo International Airport’s runway had received certification for large aircraft. This follows the roll-out of a series of airport improvements, including investment in the control tower, navigation aid systems, fuel supply and runway rehabilitation.
The Mozambican government has also launched tenders for the concession, construction and operation of commercial developments at Maputo, Beira and Nacala airports, ranging from shopping centres to hotels and apartments.
Source: Club Of Mozambique