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Air Tanzania aims higher with new plane purchases

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Air Tanzania aims higher with new plane purchases
Air Tanzania Boeing 787-8 will arrive this month

The purchase of new big aircraft for Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL) will help to promote and improve the tourism sector hence boosting national income Plans are also underway to increase the number of flights inside Africa to South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe and outside Africa, to include India and China, to begin with, before they go to Europe and other places.

This was said by ATCL’s Head of Public Relations Josephat Kagirwa in Dar es Salaam last week.

“Up till now, Air Tanzania flies to ten airports inside Tanzania, using its three ‘Bombardier Q 400’ planes that have the carrying capacity of 76 passengers, considerably improving domestic travel,’’ Kagirwa reported. He added that it was also easy for tourists to travel from one attraction to another.

‘’Air transport reduces the time of the journey and helps tourists to visit many attractions in the shortest period possible to suit their programmes,” he said.

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The national air carrier expects to receive three big air planes with different capacities, B787-800 Dreamliner with the capacity of carrying 262 passengers and Bombardier CS 300, with the capacity of carrying 132 passengers each.

In doing so, Tanzania will have the capacity to attract many more tourists and the national income in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will increase because of the big amount of tourists will visit our tourist attractions and use commodities and other needs here inside the country and use transport in the respective towns.

According to the ATCL publicist, his company has purchased seven new air planes, three of which are from Bombardier Aerospace Company (BAC), Dash 8-400, which are already in use. One Boeing 787-8 will arrive this month.

Two planes from Bombardier Aerospace Company (BAC) called CS 300 will arrive in December. An order has already been confirmed for the delivery of another airplane, a Boeing 787-8.

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“The acquisition of these new airplanes will enable us to provide services inside and outside the country,’’ Kagirwa pointed out.

He added that previously, there was no meaningful or significant investment in the company, prompting us to lease planes that did not help the airline to meet its goals and business strategies.

The airline’s official said after the arrival of the first three planes, Air Tanzania has been able to provide services to 11 airports namely Zanzibar, Kilimanjaro, Mwanza, Bukoba, Kigoma, Tabora, Dodoma, Mbeya, Songea, Mtwara; and Comoro, operating more than one flight per day in some of them.

‘’We have put in place strategies for coping with stiff competition in the market by choosing the type of planes that give us an edge in the competition. We have looked into the issue of operational costs as a pre-requisite in choosing the type of planes that we purchase,’’ Kagirwa explained.

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In addition to the type of plane, the number of planes purchased goes together with the company’s business strategic plans to improve destination reach amidst a friendly timetable.

‘’By considering the targeted market, the type of planes that we have purchased are divided in three categories or groups, which are Near Voyage, Middle Voyage and Far Voyage,’’ said the official.

On plans to make fares affordable to many Tanzanians, Kagirwa said they have set fares in consideration of operational costs and the magnitude of competition in the market.

‘’Operational costs in air transportation are high due to the fact that most requirements are available at higher cost and have to import from abroad. Strategies are being devised to reduce costs. We have to make sure that customers do not compensate for costs that are avoidable on our part like negligence, theft, corruption, over-staffing and lack of innovation,’’ pointed out.