Emirates is boosting its Africa network with the launch of two new destinations – Lusaka, the capital of Zambia, and Harare, the capital city of Zimbabwe.
Zambia and Zimbabwe will now be linked with a five times weekly flight from Dubai, starting from 1st February 2012.
“Emirates has long understood the enormous potential of Africa, which today is one of the fastest-expanding economic regions of the world, benefitting from a combined market of over one billion people, rising consumer demand and an abundance of natural resources,” said His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline & Group.
“Zambia and Zimbabwe will be our 20th and 21st African destinations and their addition to our global network will enable us to provide new flexibility and choice for customers, help to grow trade routes and create important new inbound and outbound markets for tourism,” added His Highness.
The Dubai-Lusaka-Harare service will be operated by an A330-200 aircraft in a three-class configuration that offers 12 luxurious First Class seats, 42 seats in Business Class and generous space for 183 passengers in Economy Class.
Passengers flying Emirates from Lusaka and Harare will be able to connect to points across the Far and Middle East, Indian sub-continent, Europe and Australasia via the airline’s hub in Dubai.
Africa was one of only two continents to record economic growth during the recent global downturn and its growth rate is likely to exceed 5 per cent this year, according to the Harvard Business Review.
With a collective Gross Domestic Product now roughly equal to that of Brazil or Russia, Relative Market Growth Index forecasts indicate that Africa’s combined revenue could grow by approximately $1 trillion by 2020.The number of households with discretionary income is projected to rise by 50 percent over the next 10 years.
Starting 1st February 2012, EK 713 will depart Dubai on every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday at 0925hrs, arriving in Lusaka at 1450hrs. The service will depart Lusaka at 1620hrs, arriving in Harare at 1720. The return flight leaves Harare at 1920, arriving Lusaka at 2020. It departs Lusaka at 2150 and lands in Dubai at 0710hrs the next day.
With a fleet of 157 aircraft and already the largest A380 operator in the world, Emirates currently flies to 114 destinations in 67 countries.
Services to Basra, Geneva and Copenhagen have already started this year. Flights to St Petersburg begin on 1st November with Baghdad following suit as of 13th November. Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires become new links into South America from 3rd January 2012.