Wataniya Air­ways re­sumes flights in new shape

Kuwait Times - - LOCAL -

Wataniya Air­ways, one of the three na­tional car­ri­ers of Kuwait, re­sumes its flights today in a new shape af­ter prepa­ra­tions made over a year. The com­pany’s first sched­uled flight heads to Ge­or­gia’s cap­i­tal, Tbil­isi, and it op­er­ates three flights a week, while other flights are sched­uled on July 12-13 to Azer­bai­jan’s Baku and Bos­nia and Herze­gov­ina’s Sara­jevo re­spec­tively. The first phase of the flights will head to 16 des­ti­na­tions, mainly Egypt, UAE, Le­banon, Jor­dan, Iran, In­dia, Pak­istan and some European coun­tries. Wataniya is work­ing with a clear bud­get in line an am­bi­tious plan over the next five years af­ter its new own­ers had re­duced cap­i­tal from KD 50 mil­lion (about $163 mil­lion) to KD 10 mil­lion (about $32.7 mil­lion).

Al-Tuwai­jri Group has man­aged to re­vive the com­pany, af­ter in­creas­ing its cap­i­tal and meet­ing most of its com­mit­ments. The group named Ali Al-Fozan as Chair­man of the Board of Di­rec­tors and Riyadh Al-Saeed as his deputy, while Khaled Al-Mar­zouq, Fawzi AlA­teeqi and Ibrahim Al-Tuwai­jri are mem­bers of the Board of Di­rec­tors.

The com­pany’s share­hold­ers in­jected fresh liq­uid­ity that met 96 per­cent of its fi­nan­cial com­mit­ments, and it is ex­pected that the com­pany will dou­ble its cap­i­tal to KD 20 mil­lion (about $65.4 mil­lion) af­ter op­er­at­ing its flights. The com­pany pre­pared a new op­er­at­ing plan based on some pil­lars; launch­ing from Kuwait to some world, Arab and Gulf des­ti­na­tions, and cre­at­ing com­pet­i­tive priv­i­leges and ad­di­tional ser­vices to pas­sen­gers.

Dur­ing the prepa­ra­tion pe­riod, the firm was keen to de­velop staff and na­tional cadres as well as use tech­nol­ogy and dig­i­tal modern sys­tems and keep pace with ini­tia­tives is­sued by the In­ter­na­tional Air Trans­port As­so­ci­a­tion (IATA) and the In­ter­na­tional Civil Avi­a­tion Or­ga­ni­za­tion (ICAO).

The re­turn of Wataniya’s flights will not be at the ac­count of both Kuwait Air­ways and Al­Jazeera Air­ways, but it is an op­por­tu­nity to achieve in­te­gra­tion amongst the three air­ways. The com­pany re­sumes its flights with two Air­bus A320s, and the fleet will be com­pleted by the end of this year or next year. It has a suf­fi­cient num­ber of pilots and crews who have been trained over the past pe­riod.

It will work in line with needs of the Kuwaiti mar­ket, mainly Kuwaiti pas­sen­gers, with three cat­e­gories: na­tional busi­ness, econ­omy pre­mium and na­tional ser­vice. The com­pany said in a state­ment that it has a fiveyear plan un­til 2022 and fo­cuses on pro­vid­ing ex­cel­lent ser­vices to all trav­el­ers. On June 18, Wataniya 18 ob­tained an Air Op­er­a­tor Cer­tifi­cate from Kuwait In­ter­na­tional Air­port to be a na­tional car­rier in the coun­try. It also an­nounced on June 22 that it re­ceived its first Air­bus A320 plane from its fleet. —KUNA

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