TRANSPORT, Works, Supply and Communication Minister Yamfwa Mukanga cuts a ribbon as he hands over medical equipment to Kamuchanga Hospital donated by Mopani Copper Mines.
TRANSPORT, Works, Supply and Communication Minister Yamfwa
Mukanga cuts a ribbon as he hands over medical equipment to Kamuchanga
Hospital donated by Mopani Copper Mines.

GOVERNMENT says it has opened talks with prospective investors to re-establish a national airline.

Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communications Yamfwa Mukanga said his ministry has intensified efforts to re-establish a national airline to help boost the country’s tourism.

Mr Mukanga said in an interview in Lusaka yesterday that a committee set up by the ministry for the re-establishment of a national carrier has come up with recommendations which have since been taken to Cabinet for approval.

“We have submitted our recommendations to Cabinet for approval because we don’t want this programme of coming up with a national airline to fail,” he said.

Mr Mukanga said the absence of a national airline has negatively affected the development of tourism, non-traditional exports and other industries that directly or indirectly rely on tourism.

He said many countries have expressed willingness to help Zambia re-establish a national airline.

Mr Mukanga said his ministry is also doing feasibility studies to determine how much it will cost Government to re-establish a national airline.

The minister said Government is working hard to reposition Zambia as an air transport regional hub.

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47 COMMENTS

  1. Drop it please! its a waste of resources and capital intensive,Airlines worldwide are facing operational challenges.Zambia is highly indebted at the moment.

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    • Spot on …these dim politicians have no idea how costly it is to run an airline. Its ironic that the want to go ahead with such an expensive exercise when they are cash strapped.

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    • The KK international airport will be renovated at a cost of $350 million by a Chinese company. The works are expected to commence this month. *********

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    • This is ridiculous! Hospitals including UTH have no medicine and you want to create another luxury. Look at how much the SA government is pouring into SAA. Yaba!

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  2. this is what the people wanted to hear not every day pulling each others balls for by-elections..

    now can you distance Sakeni, Shamenda and Winter away from the media? they are carrying a very bad image

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  3. This is simply another debt accruing project with no real means of achieving anything the minister is talking about. National Airlines do not boost tourism or make you a regional hub. We have said this many times and the only development that will DEFINITELY make Zambia a regional hub for air transport is a good modern airport with capacity to handle air traffic. Every country in sub Sahara Africa is with an hour or two and I can’t see how any major international carrier would avoid that. The proflights and the other smaller airlines can then benefit and grow in taking hold of partnerships for the regional routes. A national airline will not achieve that and if tickets arenot cheaper then It’s bound to fail because standards will not compete

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    • Spot on….how many paragraphs have we posted on LT on this very topic in past nobody ever takes notice. This is no different to the silly National Service proposal for school leavers. Some gov’ts are trying to rid themselves off these airlines and we are doing exactly the opposite. Gov’t have no business whatsoever in running airlines….why should we carry on making the same costly mistakes?

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  4. just concentrate on building good airports not this nonsense, let the private sector do business, government can later on buy shares. Proflight is busy expanding whilst you want to be spending tax payers money on a project that will fail

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    • Infrastructure development is the way forward…Lusaka International Airport looks like an out field military base from a distance and it is not even on the 20 busiest airports in Africa. FYI South Africa has about 3 airports on that list as we are stuck with retrogressive UNIPist ideas of development.

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  5. PF sometimes it helps to behave intelligent even when you are not, do a proper case study before getting into this national airline business. South African airways is running on a lose, Namibian airways is also in the same boat… Most of these national airlines are a burden on national treasury. The best would be to stregthen the capacity of Proflight a private but Zambian owned airline.

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    • WHY STRENGTHEN PROFLIGHT?
      WHEN ZAMBIAN AIRLINES ASKED FOR THAT FAVOUR, THE VULTURES DESCENDED ON THEM WITH ALL SORTS OF FALSE ACCUSATIONS BORDERING ON JEALOUSY. SO THE GOVERNMENT MUST JUST START ITS OWN AIRLINE OR SHELF THE IDEA IF THEY ARE STRAPPED OF CASH. PERIOD.

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    • Musokonginga, But Proflight is Zambeef and the story of Zambeef is not inspiring at all. These guys fed us on stuff with chemicals without mercy.

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  6. @1,2 u are fo ols. ls it pf that built the warehouse u are refering to ?for 20 years mmd failed. Anyway when u are under demonic influence u are always on de negative. lnsult,lie,defem ,cry ,lazy out while Zambia sails under the able capt.

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    • The leaders of PF were in charge of both UNIP and MMD and were very close both Heads of State, KK and FJTC.

      Anyway, a beautiful airport would attract more airlines and I would rather leave this airline business to the private sector. Support Proflight. Zambeef link is petty. The only benefit from a national airline is prestige but the cost is colosul and will need to be subsidised by the tax payer instead of contributing to tax revenue. The 21st century requires proper analysis before taking up costly projects. Has the govt consulted widely before taking this paper to Cabinet? We do not want a repeat of decisions such as the “Gabon Disaster Heroes Stadium”. If the guys in GRZ do not respect intellectual discourse of issues, we do out here in the cold.

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    • Your obsession with 20 years is legendary. Please be reminded of the small detail that during half of those 20 years your hero Ukwa was the Wynter Kabimba of the MMD complete with the arrogance, violence and ignorance of the law!

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  7. How many times are they going to be talking about this airline sure? Please talk in silence and then inform the public when the deal is done or consult when your are about to go into partnership not just rhetoric day in day out. Zambian politics is taking a nasty twist and I hope someone will put a stop to this soon. Stop taking the kindness of the Zambian people for granted.

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  8. I and several others were forcibly taken out of our seats at Lusaka int Airport then, to make way for Grey Zulu and his entourage, who was on his way to Moscow, in 1989.

    That’s what happens with ‘National Airlines’ which politicians feel owe them their existence; political interferences until it nosedives into the sea.

    Zambia Airways’ existence was due to political expediency and patronage, at Tax payers’ cost and its demise was equally politically motivated. Anything Kaundash had to go.

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    • Factor in Sata’s secret AWOL medical trips abroad…the era for national airlines is long gone.

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  9. ZAMBIANS?? THERE ARE MANY WAYS A COUNTRY CAN ESTABLISH AN AIRLINE?? WE NEED IT TO HELP THE COUNTRY DEVELOP TOURISM. MANY ESTABLISHED CARRIERS ARE ALREADY WILLING TO HELP. IT’S A MODEL THAT HAS WORKED IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD. IT DOES NOT NEED THE GOVERNMENT TO RUN IT, IN THE LIKES OF SOUTH AFRICAN AIRWAYS?? PRIVATELY RUN WITH LIMITED GOVERNMENT SHARES, AS A NATIONAL FLAG CARRIER WOULD BE A SUCCESS.

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    • A national airline DOES NOT increase tourism do not let anybody cheat you…in fact you can attract more tourists via the private sector with the likes of Emirates, British Airways and KLM/Kenya Airlines. You have airlines flying in right at your doorstep yet you are looking for outdated solutions. Why are we always making things difficult for ourselves always looking for the lazy costly solutions out of a problem.
      Wake up!!

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  10. @ TheEngineer(Australia) – The KK international airport will be renovated at a cost of $350 million by a Chinese company. The works are expected to commence this month. It will be turned into an ultra-modern airport after the four year project is complete.

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  11. Please stop lying
    Cabinet received the recommendations months ago and you’ve been sitting on them Hon Minister. If you acted on the recommendations when they were received earlier this year, we would have had the national airline in place already. Netherlands and South Korea are ready to help with the training and the aircraft but as usual, someone wants his account to be topped up

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  12. Talks for KK International Airport expansion done

    GOVERNMENT has concluded negotiations with China Jiangxi Corporation for International Economic and Technical Co-operation for the expansion of an ultra-modern Kenneth Kaunda (KK) International Airport at a cost of US$385 million.
    The terminal building, which is expected to be completed over four years, will have a capacity of four million passengers annually and is estimated to create 3,000 jobs.
    National Airports Corporation Limited managing director Robinson Misitala said this in an interview in Livingstone.
    “This serves to confirm that the long-awaited project to upgrade KK International Airport has finally come to fruition.
    This follows the conclusion of negotiations with the successful bidder, China Jiangxi Corporation for Inte

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  13. at a cost of US$385 million with a delivery period of 54 months,” he said.
    Mr Misitala said the contractor will soon move on site to start works any time this month.
    “There will be massive works from the time the contractor moves on site to the date of completion of the project.
    However, the works will be done in a phased and systematic approach to avoid major disruption to the smooth operation of the airport and inconvenience to the passengers, employees and the public,” he said.
    The new infrastructure will also have an airport hotel with a capacity of 80 rooms, fuel farm, in-flight catering and aircraft hangars.
    Mr Misitala said the passenger terminal building will also have six aero bridges and a 30-room transit hotel to accommodate passengers in transit.
    Other amenities will incl

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  14. Other amenities will include an office complex with conference facilities, a shopping mall, cargo facilities, rescue and fire services.
    It will also have a new aircraft parking area, car park, aircraft underground refuelling facility, stand-alone control tower while the existing terminal building will be rehabilitated.
    “The project will create a number of jobs and it is expected that more than 3,000 workers of different skills will be employed during the construction period,” he said.
    Mr Misitala said the completion of the infrastructure upgrade will trigger an increase in passenger, cargo and aircraft movements at KK International Airport, which could become a hub for international traffic.
    It will further make the airport a major transit and regional centre of excellence for the dist

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  15. Ba PF, people will not be eating you chit chat all the time. Can you start working instead of making pronouncement after pronouncement. ‘PF Government will introduce Airline-Transport Minister’ ..this was October 2011; ‘Zambia’s plans for national airline intensify’, November 2012; ‘Government still looking for a strategic partner before establishing the national airline’, this was April 2013, ….the same Minister had at one point mentioned that by 31 July 2013 we would have an airline running. So many statements, absolutely no action.

    Stop taking Zambians for granted ka….don’t think you can get away with yapping all the time. Everything is yapping….time is ticking….so far two wasted PF years….you will regret having taken people for a ride…..

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  16. Air Transport Regional Hub! Which region?

    Just establish a national airline and let it grow naturally, with airport rebuilding. However, spare us talk about regional hub. We don’t even have a reliable bus or train service, and you are talking about regional air transport hub. Spare us the shame.

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    • Let it grow naturally?? LOL You think an airline is a company that grows just like bus company…this is a dog eat dog sector which requires massive initial investments and continuous tweaking, moreover our African skies are not liberated making it even more costly to do business.
      This venture is all in the name of misplaced nationalistic pride that will only benefit the politicians and the president who will use it as his personal Limousin to secretly ferry him to his hospital abroad.
      wake up!!

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  17. We badly need a national airline. Even Zimbabwe are still running one so having one and running it profitably is no rocket science. You can’t say we don’t need it because it drains a lot of money or it failed before. You need to understand that ministers and managers are not paid to avoid risks but to manage them. Ask any true enterprenuer, they will prove this to you. Risks in business will always be there you just have to learn to manage them. Infact, I propose we have UBZ back because most not all but most privately owned buses are a joke, we need order restored in mother Zambia. A lot of countries still have semi-state owned public buses and they do just fine and I believe when all this is done we will see people going into other projects and that will bring further development.

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    • You clearly ignorant to what is happening to Zimbabwean Airlines…its this selfsame lack of simple research and sheer laziness that is costing our nation millions of dollars every month. No entrepreneur worth his salt would invest in an airline today any where in the world. Branson tried it in Nigeria where is that airline today?
      Wake up from this docility!!

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    • Just to share an experience I had with UBZ. I am now 50 but as young boy of about 7, i was traveling on a UBZ bus one night with my parents when the driver picked what i think was an argument with one male passenger. This was in the middle of nowhere between Kacholola and Luangwa bridge. The driver suddenly stopped the bus on the side of the road and after a struggle bundled the passenger out of the bus, locked the door and left him for dead. Whether this man survived , i have no idea.What surprised me most was none of the passengers on the bus including my parents could say anything to the driver to try to help the passenger. Those were the UBZ and KK days.

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    • Ba sunrise
      Excuse some of these bloggers born in the late 80s and 90s….they were not there; they just see pictures in magazines. They are not well cultivated when it comes to critical thinking its no wonder riots and protests are the order of the day at our educational institutions. Which gov’t today still runs public buses? How can someone in his right mind even propose this?

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  18. This is good dream, people who dream are better than those who dont, i just hope this wont remain a dream, otherwise, looking forward to seeing it’s birth, i personally would wait for five years to go aboard to make sure all parts are properly and tightly joined in terms of everything, site, engineering, personel as in pilots etc, pantu am afraid of flying and to make matters worse, a Zambian breed? qwe sure, epofye it takes wine on a plane to instill my trust in these pilots here, what more ku zed? I believe ba sata will bring this dream to life, i trust him on this one, not na cobra tangasha!

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  19. We have had Zambia Airways, Aero Zambia, Zambian Express, Zambian Airways, Zambezi Airlines on the scene. Who killed or committed commercial suicides on these and some of the past airlines? If the cartel working behind the scene is comprised of Mahtani, Nchito and Mmembe, who have their fingers poked into this airline project to make money under the PF climate, then the whole scheme will be turned into a WHITE ELEPHANT.

    Zambia’s priority must be vested in the development of good durable roads, railway lines, agriculture, agro-based and engineering-based industries, education, health facilities and improve the quality of life in rural areas. Flying is a luxury to be only enjoyed by the rich.

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  20. Airline business is one business we can not afford to ignore as a nation. Just for your information:
    1. USD6.4 billion of goods travel by air annually . Thats 35% of all world trade
    2. 3.5% of world economy relies on aviation (aviation supports business)
    3. Airlines fly 3 billion passengers per year for business and pleasure (tourism)
    4. 57 million livelihoods globaly are supportd by airlines (employment generation)
    Source. IATA

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    • And how many established airlines and freight companies like DHL and UPS are fighting for that business?
      Zambia is currently serviced by airlines…what is your national airline going to do differently that competition is not doing? Are you yourself going to opt for this airline even if its $200 more expensive than Emirates? The era for national airlines is gone why create a costly problem in the first place.

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