Rwanda’s national carrier, RwandAir is set to send a team of experts to Democratic Republic of Congo next week for a feasibility study, RwandAir’s Corporate and Communication Manager, Michael Otieno revealed to Business Times yesterday in a phone interview.
He explained that the feasibility study will pave-way for the national carrier’s plans of opening up an office in DR Congo’s capital city Kinshasa soon.
The development follows days after the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the two countries of Rwanda and DR Congo.
“The team will be carrying out a study on where we will be setting-up our offices, issues concerning ground handling at the Kinshasa airport and booking offices in Kinshasa,” Otieno added.
In the MoU signed between the two neighbouring countries Rwanda will resume direct flights to Kinshasa.
Aviation cooperation between Rwanda and DRC had been halted by the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi.
Otieno also explained that RwandAir’s team will also be looking at the carrier’s technical operation before operations in the country begins.
He also added that the national carrier is looking forward to reaching an agreement with their DRC counterparts on issues regarding Fuel contract once the flights between the two countries resume.
Substantial economic and political benefits for the two nations are expected to increase tremendously after the signing of the agreement and once the flights between Kigali and Kinshasa begin.
“We will also reach an agreement on how many flights their (DR Congo) national carrier will be making in the country and the number of flights we will be making in a week,’ Otieno explained.
Otieno believes the national carrier will start with three flights a week.
“With our current fleet we can always start with three flights in a week and they will increase as the carrier acquires more aircrafts,” He explained.
After the acquiring their two Bombardier CRJ-200 aircrafts, the national carrier is expecting to acquire the 767 and 737-800 Boeing fleet in March.
The two boeing fleet will help the carrier to conduct direct flights to South African during the World Cup period.