Kenya Airways is launching its 54th destination on the 19th June to N’djamena in Chad.
The new route which will operate via Cotonou, the capital of Benin, will see Kenya Airways strengthen its presence in Central Africa, a landlocked geographical territory that depends largely on imports.
The airline will operate the route with a Boeing 737 – 800, 2 times a week every Sunday and Wednesday out of Nairobi.
“We are seeking to consolidate our presence in the African market by flying from every Capital in Africa by 2013. Our objective this year is to open 8 new destinations including N’djamena,” said Kenya Airways Chief Executive Officer Dr. Titus Naikuni.
In April, Kenya Airways signed an agreement to purchase nine Boeing 787 Dreamliners with an option of buying four more, to boost its expansion into the African market.
Dr. Naikuni added that Kenya Airways was seeking to diversify its route network throughout Africa in order to tap into the unique opportunities in this very diverse continent.
“We are opening up Africa to a world of opportunity. Other markets around the world are already saturated and more airlines are increasing their presence in Africa as its the new business frontier,” said Naikuni.
Dr. Naikuni noted that the aviation experts had singled out the African market as ripe for growth citing the need for fast, reliable and safe transport in the context of infrastructure challenges facing many of them.
“Most countries in Central Africa including Chad are landlocked and thus have limited export opportunities. However, they represent an important trade corridor to the lucrative West African market where Kenya Airways has a strong presence,” concludes Dr. Naikuni.
Kenya Airways has appointed a local GSA at Ndjamena Tousazmuts limited and also set up its own sales and station office ahead of the June 19th inaugural flight.