More airlines eye Kili airport
Transport minister Dr Harisson Mwakyembe disembarks from the Qatar Airways Airbus A320 during the launch of the airline’s Doha - Kilimanjaro route at Kilimanjaro International Airport.
Two more international airlines after Qatar that launched its maiden flight yesterday -- Turkish Airlines and Emirates Air -- plan to launch direct flights to Kilimanjaro International Airport (Kia) following the rehabilitation and maintenance project at the facility, according to Natural Resources and Tourism minister Khamis Kagasheki.
The maintenance project was spearheaded by the Kilimanjaro Airport Development Company (Kadco), a company that manages operations of the Kia and which has already secured a $30 million from a Netherlands-based firm, Orion Grand Facility in a bid to transform Kia into a fully-fledged tourist gateway. Speaking during the maiden launch of Qatar Airways Doha –Kilimanjaro route at Kia yesterday, Kagasheki said Kia will now get connections from the rest of the world which will help increase tourist inflow into the country as well as increase the country’s revenue earnings.
“We have unique tourist destinations that can attract more tourists in to the country. The good news is that we have respectable airline companies flying directly into the country that will help to connect us to the rest of the world,” he said.
Earlier the Transport minister Dr Harrison Mwakyembe speaking during the event said the airliner’s decision to vie for the Doha-Kilimanjaro route would be of great significance to the country’s economy.
The Kadco Board chairman Ambassador Hassan Gumbo Kibelloh said the company would provide five-star quality handling services.
“Our vision is not only to make Kia a competitive airport but we are also dedicated to environmental conservation,” he said.The Qatar Airways chief Commercial officer Marwan Koleilat during the occasion said the company’s launch of the Doha-Kilimanjaro route is commitment to providing world-class services adding that Kilimanjaro will now be connected to a variety of destinations across the country.Qatar Airways joins other major airlines such as KLM, Edelweiss air, Condor air and Ethiopian Airlines to fly to the northern located international airport.