GER­MAN FIRM HELP­ING SWACAAA GET NEW AIR­LINE

Sunday Observer - - FRONT PAGE - BY THEMBEKA DLAMINI

The Swazi­land Civil Avi­a­tion Au­thor­ity (SWACAA) has en­gaged a Ger­man con­sult­ing com­pany to not only as­cer­tain which routes lo­cals could be in­ter­ested in, but to also look for an air­line that could be in­ter­ested to ser­vice those routes. Lufthansa Con­sult­ing has, for the last few months, been as­sist­ing the au­thor­ity in try­ing to get more traf­fic to land at the air­port which has been op­er­a­tional for over two years. Ac­cord­ing to S WACAA Di­rec­tor Gen­eral Solomon Dube, as part of the au­thor­ity’s strate­gic plan there was a need for the devel­op­ment of a sci­en­tific air ser­vice plan which will utilise the King Mswati III In­ter­na­tional Air­port and the board al­lowed t hem to hire t he ser­vices of Lufthansa. He clar­i­fied that the con­sul­tancy was not the air­line. He said the con­sul­tants came to the coun­try and ad­vised them on what to do and they were cur­rently on part two of the project, which is scout­ing for an air­line. He said a team re­turned from Jo­han­nes­burg on Wed­nes­day and were yet to de­liver their re­port to him on how de­lib­er­a­tions had gone. He said Lufthansa, as part of their project, had for­mu­lated a study that could as­sist in iden­ti­fy­ing the ex­act type of air­line that would be suited for the coun­try. He said even though clients who used their ser­vices went to Jo­han­nes­burg, they re­alised that there was a huge de­mand for des­ti­na­tions such as Dur­ban, Cape Town and Harare as most con­nected to these des­ti­na­tions.

Dis­cus­sions

He said the pre­lim­i­nary dis­cus­sions with a small South African air­line were at in­fancy stage and it was up to the tar­geted air­line to have ad­vanced dis­cus­sion with the look of com­ing to the coun­try. He said dur­ing in­tro­duc­tions to the yet to be named air­line, the South Africans stated that they had pre­vi­ously had in­ter­est in com­ing to the coun­try. Dube said their time­lines were to the ef­fect that the com­pany was con­sid­er­ing com­ing to the coun­try with a view to com­mit and this should hap­pen within the next six months. He said their as­so­ci­a­tion with Lufthansa has opened doors for them as they were to at­tend the Route World Fo­rum in Spain where they will get to meet other air­lines.

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