Air Tanzania in new market network as it spreads wings to Europe

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By Alex Malanga @ChiefMalanga

Dar es Salaam. Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL) endeavour to increase its impact and visibility on the global stage have gathered momentum after approaching Rwanda Air, Qatar Airways and Ethiopian Airlines for code sharing and interlining, The Citizen has learnt.
The new development comes on the heels of ATCL’s announcement of a plan to start flying to London directly from Dar es Salaam. Last month, ATCL commenced flights from Dar es Salaam to Mumbai, India.
ATCL managing director Ladislaus Matindi told The Citizen yesterday that the completion of the code sharing and interlining exercise would facilitate network expansion for the national carrier at reasonable charges.
According to the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), code sharing means that ATCL would now start partnering with other airlines to issue tickets on behalf of each other for the shared routes.
“This will be a milestone for ATCL as it strives to expand its horizon to the international network,” said Mr Matindi.
Last week, ATCL secured certification for Iata Operational Safety Audit (Iosa) after it met international aviation safety standards, according to Mr Matindi.
Over a decade ago, the national carrier lost its membership in the International Air Transport Assosctaion (IATA) due to non-payment of clearing balances.
However, according to Mr Matindi, the new developments suggest that obtaining full IATA membership will depend on the airline’s Iosa performance.
The airlines are included in the Iosa registry for a period of two years before another audit takes place, according to ICAO.
Tanzania stands to gain economically from its new investment in the national airline as it ventures into the international market.
“It is up us now to take full economic advantage of all tourists visiting Tanzania,” said the ATCL director.
In Africa, Air Tanzania flies to Johannesburg in South Africa, Comoro, Bujumbura (Burundi), Entebbe (Uganda), Lusaka (Zambia) and Harare (Zimbabwe). It plans to start flying to DR Congo next year.
ATCL, whose annual passenger traffic stands at an average of 720,000, has six operational aircraft.
The planes are three Bombardier Q400, two Airbus A220-300 and one Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner.