30 March 2014

Tanzania: Rwandair Fails to Secure Dar-Mumbai Route

RWANDA'S national carrier, Rwandair, has failed to secure the rights to use the Dar es Salaam-Mumbai (Bombay) route from Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority (TCAA), as earlier reported, it has been established.

Reports say that Rwandair had held initial talks with Air Tanzania Corporation Limited (ATCL) management to use the Dar es Salaam - Mumbai (Bombay) route but were not conclusive.

According to the ATCL Acting Commercial Director, Mr Juma Boma, after the talks stalled, Rwandair officials are said to have approached TCAA to pursue the same without ATCL's knowledge.

He said that the airline had come up with their terms which they presented to officials from Rwandair but "apparently did not please the management of Rwandair so they were not conclusive."

Mr Boma said that Rwandair officials then approached TCAA to pursue the route, but they were informed that they should first contact authorities in India to see what the Bilateral Air Service Agreement between the two countries stipulated.

He said that afterwards they saw reports in the local media to the effect that Rwandair had already secured the route, but TCAA had not given them the right to use the same.

TCAA Director General, Mr Fadhili Manongi could not be reached for comment as he was outside the country when contacted.

Had Rwandair been given permission to use the route, the airline would have been operating flights and carrying passengers directly from Kigali to Dar es Salaam to pick more and proceed to Mumbai (Bombay) using the ATCL codes.

Shall the airline become capable of operating its own flights to Mumbai, TCAA would have then been forced to issue a notice of six months asking Rwandair to stop using the route as ATCL intends to resume using it.

"In the past we had agreements in the form of joint venture or code sharing which meant that an airline using our routes would pay royalties, but it does not seem to work that way nowadays, that is why we wanted to come up with our own terms," Mr Boma said.

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