Mar 07, 2012
New DRC airline to take to the skies next monthBack
Brussels|DRC|Engineering|Johannesburg|Kinshasa|Lilongwe|Lubumbashi|LUSAKA|Africa|Brussels Airlines|Components|Introducing Korongo Airlines|Korongo Airlines|Systems|Africa|Belgium|Democratic Republic Of Congo|DRC|Malawi|South Africa|Uganda|Zambia|Air Operator|Aircraft Maintenance Services|Airline|Maintenance|Mining|Service|Services|Systems|Underdeveloped Airport Infrastructure|Christophe Allard|Georges Arthur Forrest|Infrastructure|Boeing 737|Operations
© Reuse this
CEO Christophe Allard told Engineering News Online that the most significant aspect of Korongo Airlines establishing its operating base in Lubumbashi is that it would in future be able to provide aircraft maintenance services to European Union standards in the heart of Africa.
“We have a 12 000 m2 piece of Belgium in Central Africa, thanks to our new hangar for servicing aircraft up to the size of a Boeing 737. We also invested heavily in the underdeveloped airport infrastructure, to get it up to modern international standards, allowing us to operate international flights from the airport to previously cut-off regions,” he said.
Introducing Korongo Airlines represents a new way of travel to the region. The company said it would develop its routes and flight frequencies in three phases during the year, with the first phase entailing eight weekly flights between Lubumbashi and the DRC’s capital Kinshasa, and two weekly connections from Lubumbashi to Johannesburg.
This is in addition to Brussels Airlines operating a three-times-a-week service from Lubumbashi to Brussels.
Other destinations to be connected in future development phases include Kolwezi, in the south of the DRC where there is a significant demand for the service from mine operators, Lilongwe in Malawi, Lusaka in Zambia and Entebbe in Uganda.
The airline would introduce business-class travel options from Lubumbashi, as well as snacks on short-distance flights, and hot meals on any flights longer than two hours.
Tickets would also be available electronically for the first time in the DRC, while passengers could choose to buy fully flexible, semiflexible or low-cost tickets, depending on individual needs.
The airline would also target international ticket booking systems such as the Galileo and Amadeus ticketing networks to enable customers to book tickets from anywhere in the world.
Korongo Airlines would also provide air-freight capacity in the region.
The airline is a joint venture between Brussels Airlines, which owns a 40% interest and is supplying the leased Boeing 737-300 and a BAE 146-200 aircraft, civil engineering and mining services group George Arthur Forrest, which holds 39.6% interest, and DRC investors.
The aircraft were recently refitted and modernised and underwent a ‘tropicalisation’ process to accustom the aircraft components to the hot and humid climate of the region.
Edited by: Mariaan Webb© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Maintenance News
Metal roofing industry body Southern African Metal Cladding and Roofing Association (Samcra), a division of the Southern African Institute of Steel Construction, completed the draft of the new standard for cladding, aimed at assisting engineers and specifiers with...
Energy and petrochemicals company Shell has received positive responses from original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) for its range of transmission-component protection oil, Shell Spirax, which was launched in April. Shell commercial technical manager Raymond Abraham...
Recent Research Reports
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
This Week's Magazine
South Africa remains an important manufacturing and export platform for Ford Motor Company, says executive chairperson Bill Ford. However, he adds that other countries on the continent are “becoming interesting”, and that the US carmaker is casting its net wider for...
Germany’s Max-Planck-Society (MPG) and the Max-Planck-Institute for Radio Astronomy (MPlfR) are investing €11-million (about R150-million) into South Africa’s MeerKAT radio telescope array programme. The money will be used to design, build and install S-band radio...
Infrastructure spend in sub-Saharan Africa will grow from $70-billion in 2013 to $180-billion by 2025, says PwC capital projects and infrastructure Africa leader Jonathan Cawood. This is one of the findings of PwC’s Capital Projects & Infrastructure report on East...
Private-owned defence and aerospace manufacturer Paramount Group and the Ichikowitz Family Foundation unveiled its Anti-Poaching Skills and K9 Training Academy in Magaliesburg last month.
The inclusion of Bluetooth to provide sub-three meter accuracy and heightened functionality for users is one of the ways to change existing wireless networks into engagement networks. An engagement network differs from common wireless networks in that it enables the...