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Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Government intensifies efforts to set up airline

Economy Government intensifies efforts to set up airline

FILE: Transport, Works, Supply and Communications Minister Yamfwa Mukanga  after the arrival aboard the first Royal Dutch airline KLM flight between Amsterdam and Lusaka at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport.
FILE: Transport, Works, Supply and Communications Minister Yamfwa Mukanga after the arrival aboard the first Royal Dutch airline KLM flight between Amsterdam and Lusaka at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport.

GOVERNMENT has intensified efforts to re-establish a national airline to help boost the country’s tourism sector.

Minister of Transport, Works, Supply and Communication Yamfwa Mukanga said a committee set up for the re-establishment of a national carrier has come up with recommendations which have since been taken to Cabinet for approval.

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

“There is a lot of commitment towards the re-establishment of a national airline. The ministry has tabled the recommendations to Cabinet for approval and once this is done, we will go ahead to establish the national airline.

“As a ministry, we want to assure the nation that the establishment of a national airline for Zambia is underway,” he said.

Mr Mukanga said some big international airlines have expressed interest to partner with Zambia on the re-introduction of a national airline.

The minister, who declined to name the airlines as the matter was yet to be tabled before Cabinet, said some big international carriers are keen to partner with the country so that they could paint their planes in Zambian colours and employ local people.

He said other airlines are also interested in buying or financing the purchase of new planes for the country.

Mr Mukanga said government has learnt many lessons in the past and hence Cabinet will assess all the options on the table and come up with the best decision on behalf of the Zambian people.

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

He 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.

32 COMMENTS

  1. Take to Cabinet for approval when Cabinet does not meet? For God and my country we in a national mourning.

    • Yes, which Cabinet can evaluate such a technical propose, if it at all it is there, and even if the Cabinet was meeting; the one with Kambwili in it, or some nucleus part of the Cabinet? And how do they do Financial Feasibility studies after approval of proposal by ‘Cabinet’, when it should be the other way round – what was the committee of expert looking at if not such? And another deadline passed – by June 2014, it was reported earlier – another PF promise?

    • Far fetched ideas and too much talk! A workable solution has been staring the government in the face, but they seem not to have seen it. Start small, with local building blocks and judiciously grow!

  2. You’ll be eaten alive by Africa’s big brothers-Kenya airways and Ethiopian airlines even before your infant airline starts crawling.

  3. As a landlocked country We should have a very strong airline industry. This should not only be for passengers but for cargo as well as security.

    • THE ONLY GOOD AND POSITIVE COMMENT SINCE I STARTED READING THIS ARTICLE ON THE REFORMATION OF THE FLAG CARRIER. KEEP IT UP BROTHER/SISTER. YOU CAN’T BE NEGATIVE AT ALL TIMES. IN ZAMBIA’S CASE AN AIRLINE IS JUST A MATTER OF URGENCY RATHER THAN QUESTION MARKS.

  4. Here comes another attempt by the corrupt politicians to siphon funds out of the country. Naive and non technical Zambians can never run an airlines. It needs dedicated personnel with a hell lot of experience to run an airline. Who is going to run this? Fred Mmembwe?????? God!!! How long are you all going to allow our beloved country to be bled by such villains?

    • If the air industry in Zambia is that lucrative, how come Zambia Airways collapsed followed by Zambian Airline. Poor management and greed. Firstly, if this idea were allowed to bare fruit, government should have no role. Secondly, a proper feasibility and cost analysis needs to be carried out. Any reasonable person has predicted that this venture will result in tears.

    • Nice, might I also suggest:

      Air no Plan
      Air Today, Gone Tomorrow
      Airs no Need
      Political Dreamliner
      Donchi Air
      A Wing and a Prayer
      Fry Zambia dot com

      And of course…

      We coulda’ invested in schools but did this instead Airlines

    • @Spuds; you the bomb. You made my day. I am in stitches with laughter. “Political Dreamliner” is the best followed by “Air today, Gone tomorrow”.

  5. Are Zambian air planes allowed into EU territory? If not, then how on earth do they expect to make money from this silly venture being undertaken by our dear Chipuba?

    • They will wasting money on a brand new aircrafts. ..instead of using that money for worthy projects.

  6. Please, you do not need a National Airline (whatever that means). Airlines throughout the world, even the reputable ones are facing serious operational/financial problems. Just next door, the South African Airways is always being bailed out by the government to the tune of billions of rands. Can a Zambian National Airline survive in this industry? Definitely not!! My advise to these Mumbwes is use the money to upgrade the National Airport to international standards….I mean really good airports, then you will have other airlines bringing in tourists. By the way what makes think tourists will chose to travel by your national airline? Start by showcasing tourism potential and not just big falls and luangwa, you fools.

    • @PM. So if your neighbours are having marital problems you tell everyone of your relatives not to get married? You should realise that somethings are difficult but inevitable. Zambia will be losing billions of dollars if a national airline is not established quickly following the pull out of British airway’s direct flights to London. Learn to use your head and not falling prey to the cheap politics coming from the clueless opposition parties.

  7. Please show us data where a country’s tourism sector has been boosted due to creating a national airline…what is it that the selfsame airline will do differently that the current airlines in Zambia are not doing? There is lack of critical analysis on this issue.

  8. FREE LESSON ON SOCIALISM
    When the reward is great, the effort to succeed is great, but when government takes all the reward away, no one will try or want to succeed.
    Is this man a genius?
    An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student before, but had recently failed an entire class. That class had insisted that socialism worked and that no one would be poor and no one would be rich, a great equalizer.
    The professor then said, “OK, we will have an experiment in this class on this plan”. All grades will be averaged and everyone will receive the same grade so no one will fail and no one will receive an A…. (substituting grades for dollars – something closer to home and more readily understood by all).

    Cont’d

  9. After the first test, the grades were averaged and everyone got a B. The students who studied hard were upset and the students who studied little were happy.
    As the second test rolled around, the students who studied little had studied even less and the ones who studied hard decided they wanted a free ride too so they studied little.
    The second test average was a D! No one was happy. When the 3rd test rolled around, the average was an F. As the tests proceeded, the scores never increased as bickering, blame and name-calling all resulted in hard feelings and no one would study for the benefit of anyone else.
    Cont’d

  10. 1. You cannot legislate the poor into prosperity by legislating the wealthy out of prosperity.
    2. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving.
    3. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else.
    4. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it!
    5. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that is the beginning of the end of any nation.

  11. We need our own air line some zambians want be beggers all through and through may be some on this blogg have never or never will fly hence they are jelousy , we want our own airbus not kenyan but zambian with our beloved zambian colours in the air

  12. @Joel; Problem with people like you is that you reduce everything to such simplicitic arguement that you lose the rationale behind. Obviously, I gave you an example of our neighbours so that I dont punish you mind by taking you very far and the fact that we are in the same economic block (SADC), although South Africa has now elevated itself by joining BRICS (I hope you know what this stands for dear joel). South Africa produces aircraft parts and military plans, if you did not know, the country boasts superior airports ( Try to come to OR Tambo dear joel, you wont be able to find your way around). Air transport business is not for poor mismanaged economies like ours. Ask Nchito and Mmembe. they ended up trying to steal money to keep their mike mousy airline afloat. contd

  13. Promote tourism agressively and improve infrastracture, including roads, safaris, lodges, hotels airports before thinking of launching an airline on borrowed money. The current influx of tourists Zambian is enjoying is as a result of the Western world trying to sabotage Zimbabwe’s economy (protest tourist), once Zimbabwe gets a government viewed as moderate by the western world, you wont see a single tourist coming to Zambia. Go to any Zambian foreign mission, you wont see anything Zambian in that building apart from a dirty flag flying at half mast. Let us wake up before Zambabwe does!!!

  14. A national airline set up by Government will just gobble millions of $$$ and be bankrupt in a couple of years. And the Zambia taxpayer will have another debt that will take generations to pay back.

    If there was a market for this and it was a viable, profitable business, private investors would have set it up long time ago.

    We have seen it before. LEARN FROM PAST MISTAKES! Or is Yamfwa Mukanga really so dull!

    This is just another excuse for these corrupt politicians to LOOT the EUROBONDS!

    If they really wanted to develop Zambia they would concentrate on making Zambia a good tourist destination. Tourists AND airlines will come all by themselves.

  15. “……..said some big international carriers are keen to partner with the country so that they could paint their planes in Zambian colours and employ local people”.

    So this will not really be OUR national airline. It will just be Emirates painted in Zambian colours and employing a few locals. Now that is what I call fo.olishness!

  16. It is good for us to be positive about things but we should not ignore the realities on the ground. I do not think it is a priority at the moment due to the following reasons:

    1. The govt has serious cash constraints at the moment. It has serious challenges in funding social sectors like health and education. The new airline will put more pressure on them.
    2. Past experience has shown that govt has no capacity run an airline profitably. This implies the new airline will always depend on cash bailouts from the govt.
    3. It very likely that the new airline may not compete with existing airlines like SAA and Emirates which forced British Airways to withdraw from our route.
    4. Zambia has one of the highest airline running costs in the region which should not be ignored.

  17. What thesr people dont understand is that its not profitable at the moment to set up an airline as the African skies need to be liberated.

  18. “…… said some big international carriers are keen to partner with the country so that they could paint their planes in Zambian colours and employ local people”.

    Can someone educate me. How can this be a national airline? Or is it some big airline like KLM hiding in Zambian colors?

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