Uganda’s quasi-national airline, Air Uganda, is the latest airline to join AFRAA, the African Airline Association, according to information received from the company’s CEO, Cornwell Muleya.
Already active as a keynote speaker at the recently-held 3rd Convention for Aviation Suppliers and Stakeholders in Nairobi, the membership of U7 in Africa’s premier aviation body has opened the door for the Ugandan carrier to join such winning initiatives as the joint fuel purchasing program and will be able to participate in the next big scheme, the joint ground-handling initiative.
During the Nairobi meeting, AFRAA mentioned over US$30 million in savings for fuel purchases that participating member airlines made last year, a very significant amount of money considering the volatile nature of the prices of Jet A1 aviation fuel.
Said Cornwell Muleya in his communication: “Air Uganda became a full member of AFRAA in May 2014. This is part of our broad strategy to participate fully in the industry associations as we continue to grow the company and business.
The membership gives us access to the full range of benefits including the joint fuel purchase scheme, the lower training costs organized by AFRAA and IATA, joint ground handling, coordinated lobbying for aviation policy changes etc.” Cornwell went on to confirm that Air Uganda had already placed an application for full IATA membership and admission to the world airline body is expected to be confirmed in due course.
Air Uganda will also be present at the upcoming Routes Africa meeting in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe in June this year where Cornwell has been listed as one of the speakers of the event.
The airline, which took to the skies in late 2008, is presently fully owned by the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development, in short AKFED but talks are progressing with the Ugandan government, following an agreement between His Highness the Aga Khan and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni to have the Government of Uganda acquire a strategic share in the airline, then making it formally the flag carrier of The Pearl of Africa.
IOSA certified Air Uganda operates a fleet of 3 CRJ200 jets and serves the wider region with flights from Entebbe to Nairobi, Juba, Bujumbura, Kigali (in codeshare with RwandAir), Kilimanjaro, Dar es Salaam, Nairobi and Mombasa and notably Mogadishu. It is understood that a fleet renewal exercise is being planned to acquire newer and larger jets, so don’t miss those news and watch this space for breaking and regular news updates from the Eastern African aviation scene.