Uganda Airlines will later today receive her second new Airbus A330 Neo from France today, the national carrier has said.
Uganda received its first Airbus on December 22 and the arrival of the second aircraft will be a big boost to the country’s effort to revive its national carrier.
Government paid $145m (Shs536bn) for the two aircraft as the airline prepares to start operating long-haul flights to Dubai , London, Guangzhou and India.
Uganda Airlines CEO Cornwell Muleya last year revealed that the national carrier would start with London, Dubai and Guangzhou for its initial long- haul flights.
“In relation to international operations, we are still targeting to receive our new aircraft in the last quarter; at least by December 2020 so that we start operations by early 2021.We are targeting mainly three connections to overseas markets which is Dubai, London and Chinese market in Guangzhou,” he said in May 2020.
According to experts, flights to Dubai, London and China will be a step in the right direction since the country has a lot of interests in those destinations.
Dubai is a hub for a number of activities including trade, work and tourism, and therefore, many people fly to the city.
Many Ugandans working in Middle East will therefore be flying using the national carrier since almost all of them have to go through Dubai.
Also, many people flying to North African countries have to first reach Dubai before connecting to their destinations; Uganda Airlines will therefore come in handy.
The flights to China will also be welcomed by many Ugandans, especially traders who ply the route on several occasions to do business in several Chinese cities.
The acquisition of a second Airbus brings the national carrier’s fleet to six aircraft after four 72- seater Bombadier CRJ9OOs that arrived earlier for shorter regional routes.
Uganda Airlines currently operates flights to Bujumbura , Nairobi,Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro ,Juba , Mogadishu, and Kinshasa whereas more routes are in plan as the airline that had grounded for over 20 years seeks to establish itself among the continent’s big players in the airlines world.