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Old October 1st, 2006, 08:40 AM   #241
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$125million Nairobi Airport (JKIA) Upgrade Starts

President attends ground-breaking ceremony.


Publication Date: 9/30/2006

The first phase of upgrading Jomo Kenyatta International Airport was launched yesterday.

The Sh9 billion project will see construction of more places for parking and expansion of arrival and departure lounges.

The upgrade will also raise JKIA to the standards demanded by US authorities for planes to fly directly from Nairobi to American airports.

President Kibaki broke the ground to mark the start of the three-year expansion project.

"This is an important milestone in my Government's efforts to upgrade and transform Kenya's key international airport into a leading aviation hub in Africa and the world," said the President.

Direct flights

Aviation officials said once complete, the airport will be elevated to Category One status of the International Civil Aviation Organisation which would allow direct flights from Nairobi to any destination in the world.

Currently, airlines have to make expensive detours to Europe in order to fly to the US, Latin America and the Far East.

The first phase funded by Kenya Airports Authority and the World Bank includes putting up a new apron, taxiways and an extended fuel hydrant system.

It is expected to be complete by June next year.

In the second phase which will start in February 2007 and last for 18 months, a unit will be added and a ultra modern car park to accommodate 1,500 vehicles built.

The final stage starting in March 2007, will involve the renovation of Units One to Three and International arrivals, and construction of two in-fills.

Kenya Airports Authority managing director George Muhoho said the project will create 3,000 jobs directly and increase the airport size from 25,662 square metres to 55,222.

The parking space will be expanded by 75 per cent to cover over 350,000 square metres while the airports' annual passenger traffic capacity will increase to nine million.

But there were no mention of building an additional runway.

The airport has only one runway which if blocked, disrupts traffic for long.

Airline operators led by Kenya Airways managing director Titus Naikuni have been pushing for the construction of a second runway.

Quality of work

President Kibaki asked the KAA board to ensure the project was completed within the set budget and period, and the quality of work high.

He also announced plans to elevate Kisumu and Malindi airports to international status while Wilson, Isiolo and Wajir airports will also be expanded.

Once expanded, the Kisumu Airport will handle larger aircraft and open up the western Kenya to investors, said the President.

He said Malindi's expansion will include the construction of a new terminal building, a tower and longer runway to accommodate bigger aircraft.

The airport's expansion had been delayed due to the grabbing of land meant for the project.

But yesterday, the President urged the authority to ensure all its facilities were fenced to wade off grabbers.

He, however, noted security had been beefed up in all airports.

The authority's revenue base had also increased from Sh3 billion in the past three years to Sh5.3 billion this year.

Cargo handled

The number of passengers going through JKIA had also rose from 3.5 million in 2004 to 4.4 million this year while the volume of cargo handled increased from 192,300 tonnes in 2004 to 220,900 last year.

The President also asked to ensure the airport administration to ensure high standards of service.

"From the runways, aprons, arrival and departure lounges, cargo handling areas, immigration, customs and even parking bays, we should all see clear evidence of high international quality," he said.

During the function KAA board chairman Erastus Mwongera presented a Sh100 million cheque as dividend to the Treasury and Sh2 million towards the national relief fund.

World Bank country director Collins Bruce said the expansion of the airport was a milestone.
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Old October 3rd, 2006, 10:18 PM   #242
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Swiss Air Increases Flights from Zurich to Nairobi
October 2, 2006

Five flights per-week to Nairobi, using Airbus A330s

Swiss International Airlines has announced plans to increase its flights from Zurich to Nairobi by the start of December due to increasing tourism passengers.

The airline will now have five flights instead of the previous three flights. The new flights will be using an Airbus A330, which is set to resume operating to Nairobi with effect from October 31. The carrier had leased an aircraft from Hapag Lloyd to operate on the Nairobi route because of a delay in acquiring additional A330 aircrafts, the airline's Nairobi General Manager, Mr Yves-Alain Yersin, says.

"Effective from December 2, we will operate 2 additional flights between Zurich and East Africa, bringing the total to five flights weekly," he said.

The Swiss airline operates to more than 69 destinations in 42 countries worldwide.

In Africa, it serves Cairo, Dar- es-Salaam, Douala, Johannesburg, Malabo, Tripoli and Yaounde.

This year, the Swiss airline won some awards during the World Travel Awards held on September 20. The awards include Europe's leading airline, Europe's leading business class airline, and the world's leading economy class airline.

"These distinctions confirm to us that we are on the right track and that our products and services are acknowledged and appreciated all over the world," the airline's Chief Executive Officer, Mr Christoph Franz, said in a statement.
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Old October 3rd, 2006, 10:25 PM   #243
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SN Brussels Airlines to Revamp In-Flight Facilities on East African Routes
October 2, 2006

$13 Million to be spent upgrading in-flight facilities

Weekly the airline flies:

- 5 times to Nairobi, Kenya.
- 3 times to Entebbe (Kampala), Uganda.
- 2 times to Kigali, Rwanda


SN Brussels Airlines is merging with Virgin Express to increase its market share in the ever competitive aviation industry. The new brand name of the airline will be announced later in October 2006.

And as though to ready itself for the merger, the Belgian airline over the month of September officially unveiled its new in-flight product for long haul flights for the East African market where it flies 10 times a week; three to Entebbe, five to Nairobi and two to Kigali.

In truly East African spirit, the European carrier launched new seats and a state-of-the-art audio and video entertainment systems at the Norfolk Hotel in Kenya and Rwanda before launching in Uganda on September 26.

The new seats produced by Britsih based Contour Premium Aircraft Seating are equiped with a massage tool for a more relaxed flight and can be transformed into a 180° flat bed with a length of 198 cm. There was an earlier launch for the European market in May.

The cost of the refurbishment that included the installation of new seats, an entertainment system and curtains among others stands at a whopping euro 10 million (Ush 23.5 billion).

"These investments in in-flight comfort clearly illustrate that we have a lot of ambition on the African continent......we build on the more than 80 years of experience we already have, and more than ever we want to be the reference in Africa," said executive vice president commercial Ms. Ursula Silling.

Mr. Pierre Declerck, the SN Brussels country manager for Uganda told guests at the launch last week at the Serena Kampala Hotel that his airline would continue to be the airline of choice for travellers that valued quality.

With the new technical and comfort upgrades, flying with SN Brussels Airlines will be more passionate as the seating capacity in the business suite was reduced from 42 to 30 seats (they all contain 110 V power plugs that enable the use of several electronic devices like laptops) while the seats in economy were increased from 218 to 254 to allow for more personal space than before.

The adjustment in seats, according to company officials was the result of a thorough analysis by their Network & Sales departments.

SN Brussels came off the then Sabena Airlines in 2002. It commenced African operations seven months after and to date offers more than 285 punctual flights a day across the world. Full Interview Next Week
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Old October 6th, 2006, 09:31 PM   #244
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South African internal flight forced to turn back after 'threat'
6 October 2006

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP) - A passenger plane from Cape Town to Johannesburg turned back Friday because a passenger made a threat to the crew, a spokeswoman for the airline said.

The Kulula.com flight returned to Cape Town International Airport about 30 minutes after taking off at 11:11 a.m. (0911 GMT) because an "unruly passenger on board made a threat," airline spokeswoman Glenda Zvenyika, said.

She said police took the passenger and another person accompanying him into custody.

Zvenyika would not reveal details of the threat. She said the captain was following standard safety procedures by turning back.

None of the 159 passengers or crew on board was hurt and airport operations were not affected.
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Old October 16th, 2006, 05:32 PM   #245
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Union calls off Kenya Airways strike

NAIROBI, Oct 16 (Reuters) - A threatened strike this week by some 1,500 Kenya Airways workers was called off on Monday after union officials said they would await an industrial court ruling in a dispute over pay and other conditions.

Members of the Aviation and Allied Workers Union (AAWU) had said they would go on strike beginning Oct. 20, seeking recognition of AAWU by the airline and protesting at what they call low pay and the preferential treatment of expatriate staff.

"I want to inform the travelling public that the intended strike has been withdrawn from now. We are waiting for the court's outcome," said AAWU Secretary-General Jimi Masege.

AAWU's members include cabin crew, engineers, ground staff and customer service workers. Kenya Airways only recognises the Transport Allied Workers' Union (TAWU), which has 200 members.

"We have the upper hand in terms of numbers and that will determine which union will represent the workers," Masege told reporters on Monday after meeting officials from the airline, TAWU and the east African country's labour ministry.

On Friday, Kenyan Airways signed a collective bargaining agreement with TAWU that awarded its members a 15.5 percent pay rise over the next two years.

Labour Minister Newton Kulundu said this deal had been suspended pending the decision of an industrial court, which will now rule on the complaints.

Kenya Airways, one of Africa's few profitable national carriers, operates out of the capital Nairobi -- a major air transport hub for Africa for both passengers and cargo.

"It is business as usual at Kenya Airways for our staff and clients and we want to reassure them there is no more cause for alarm," said Paul Kasimu, its resource director.

Kenya Airways, known locally as KQ, is 26 percent owned by KLM, the Dutch arm of Air France .

In May, the airline reported an after-tax profit of 4.83 billion shillings ($67 million), a 24 percent leap that surpassed a 28-year record set the previous financial year.
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Old October 17th, 2006, 07:35 AM   #246
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Ethiopian Airlines Wins 2006 Award

Ethiopian beats of competition from Kenya Airways, who were looking to win the title for the 6th time in 8 years.

Ethiopian Airlines (ET) has been chosen 'African Airline of the Year 2006' by the African Aviation Journal.

The airline, one of Africa's oldest, won the African Aviation Award for its sound financial performance, overall profitability, passenger growth, route network expansion, fleet modernization, in-flight services and overall customer care.

The award plaque was recently handed over to Ethiopian Airlines' chief executive officer, Mr. Ato Girma Wake, by Ms. Susan Mcdernoff, deputy assistant secretary for Aviation and International Affairs at the USA Department of Transport.

The awards ceremony was held in Cape Town, South Africa on September 18, 2006. The occasion also marked the climax of the conference on African Aviation's 15th Annual Air Finance for Africa.

In his remarks, Mr. Girma Wake said, "The award reconfirmed our outstanding achievements in all aspects of the African aviation industry and it prepares us to work more and continue to offer the best service to our customers."

Mr. Kagnew Fesseha, Ethiopian's manager for public relations, told Business Week in an e-mail that the airline had been consistently profitable in its operation over the past years.

At the close of the fiscal year 2005/06, the total operating revenue grew by 21%.

"During the same budget year, revenue passenger kilometre (km) also rose by 18% and freight tonne km by 13%. Passenger number in 2005/06 showed a 14% increase over the previous year," said Kagnew.

Upon its inception on December 5, 1945, Ethiopian Airlines made its maiden flight to Cairo on April 8, 1946.

Ethiopian Airlines has steadily grown to become a reputable African airline with an unparalleled coverage of Africa to the Middle East, Asia, Europe and America.

Today, the Airlines operates the largest network on the African continent in passenger and cargo services. It covers 28 destinations in Africa via its Addis Ababa hub.In total, Ethiopian Airlines provides seamless connections to 47 destinations throughout the world.

After completing the first phase of its fleet modernization programme with the introduction of six 767-300ERs and six new generation B737-700s, Ethiopian became the first airline in Africa to place firm order for 10 of the new ultra modern Boeing 787 Dreamliner jets.

In September 2008, Ethiopian Airlines will be the first African airline flying the 787 Dreamliner aircraft in the skies of Africa, Middle East and Europe. It now operates its international network with 21 jet aircraft.

In expanding its route network within Africa and the rest of the world, Ethiopian Airlines in 2006 started new flights to Brussels, Libreville and reintroduced services to Dakar bringing the total number of ET's destinations to 47.
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Old October 18th, 2006, 11:05 AM   #247
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just some vids i found relating to south africa... and airplanes

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfPZAZPcQtU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-C0U7IyvYEo

some take offs!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VC3HSzc_YFY

johannesburg now

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XwwZTfTrMkQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_BZacCxy1A0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pqY8a7Ok4Wc
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Old October 18th, 2006, 11:12 AM   #248
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Great finds! Thank you
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Old October 18th, 2006, 11:21 AM   #249
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found this short vid that shows off South African Airways Business Class seats

looks nice

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghH6cT-krKE

and another vid of a 747 landing as it is retired to Rand airport

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3NmLD5Z3EY
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 03:51 PM   #250
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Air fares, prices soar to record heights in Zimbabwe
By ANGUS SHAW
23 October 2006

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) - Zimbabwe's money losing state airline hiked its fares by up to fivefold in record increases that put air travel out of the reach of all but the wealthiest Zimbabweans.

New fares for local, regional and long-haul flights became effective Friday after the airline again failed to meet costs for fuel, spare parts and foreign handling charges, Air Zimbabwe said in a statement Monday.

A regular round trip to London payable in local currency rose to a 1,865,000 Zimbabwe dollars, or US$7,460 (euro6,015) at the official exchange rate. On the illegal black market currency exchange, the trip would cost the equivalent US$1,245, still higher than other airlines that demand fares paid directly in scarce hard currency.

The central bank last week announced it was no longer willing to bail out the airline and other loss-making state enterprises in a chaotic economy facing record inflation and acute shortages of hard currency, gasoline, food and essential imports.

Zimbabwe is suffering its worst economic crisis since independence in 1980, blamed mostly on disruptions in agricultural production after an often violent program to seize thousands of white-owned commercial farms began in 2000.

Official inflation last month exceeded 1,000 percent, the highest rate in the world. Since that figure was announced, however, prices of general goods have soared almost daily.

Independent finance houses put real inflation at closer to 4,000 percent by factoring in huge increases in the price of telephone calls, meat, fruit and vegetables and soft drinks, beer and tobacco.

In most outlets, regular beer last week broke the 1,000 Zimbabwe dollar barrier (US$4; euro3.14) for a small bottle, up 50 percent in the past month.

The official Central Statistical Office has acknowledged its inflation figure could be flawed, in part because it doesn't have the money, staff and equipment for its own research. It also cited black marketeering on goods whose prices are fixed by the government but are mainly ignored.

Black market gasoline sells for five times the official price.
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Old October 24th, 2006, 04:51 PM   #251
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Angolan airline makes emergency landing in Lisbon

LISBON, Oct 23, 2006 (AFP) - A plane from Angolan state airline TAAG made an emergency landing on Monday in Lisbon just 15 minutes after taking off from the Portuguese capital due to technical problems, officials said.

The Boeing 747, which was bound for the Angolan capital Luanda, landed safely at Portela airport, Portugal's busiest, just before 7:00 am (0600 GMT) as fire trucks stood by as a precaution, an airport spokesman said.

Airline officials did not provide details on the nature of the technical difficulties which forced the plane to land but passengers told the Lusa news agency it appeared to have difficulty gaining altitude and zig-zagged while in the air.

The plane is scheduled to depart on Tuesday and passengers were put up by the airline at Lisbon hotels, said TAAG's representative in Portugal, Abilio Fernandes.

"We're waiting for a piece of equipment to place in the plane," he said.

Last week civil aviation authorities in Angola, a former Portuguese colony, ordered TAAG to suspend its domestic and regional flights in Africa because it said the aircraft used on these routes were not being properly maintained.
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Old October 27th, 2006, 07:50 PM   #252
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Kenya Airways flies to Paris

Kenya Airways officially launched its inaugural direct flight to Paris on Thursday.

The plane left the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on Thursday night and landed at Charles De Gaulle airport Friday morning.

KQ will be flying three times to Paris on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

The airline's commercial director Mr Hugh Fraser said the flights will provide customers in Eastern and Central Africa with flexibility of flying directly to France as well as connecting to mainland Europe and other parts of the world.

Passengers will now reach Paris within eight hours compared to the previous 14, Fraser added.

Fraser added the direct flight would spur bilateral trade between the two countries.

According to the French Embassy in Nairobi, last year, total value of trade between Kenya and France was Sh18 billion. Out of this, France exported Sh9.8 billion worth of goods to Kenya, and imported Sh8.6 billion.
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Old October 27th, 2006, 07:59 PM   #253
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Kenya Airways reports surge in profits


The Board is pleased to announce that Kenya Airways has sustained profitable growth in the first half of the 2006/07 financial year over the same period in 2005/06.
Profit after tax for the period reviewed ended at KShs 2,429m compared to KShs 2,231m during the corresponding period last year, an increase of 8.9%.

Passenger Traffic

Overall, passenger traffic for the first half increased to 1.3m, up from the prior year’s 1.2m, a growth of 7%. Areas of high growth included Middle East, Asia & Far East with 14% due to an additional destination of Guangzhou via Dubai. Southern Africa growth of 16% is mainly driven by a positive response to capacity increase on Lubumbashi, Harare, Lilongwe and the new destination Maputo. West and Central Africa growth of 15% is mainly attributed to Bamako, Dakar, Douala, Kinshasa and the new route Free Town. Northern Africa growth at 13% was mainly driven by Istanbul, Djibouti, Khartoum and Cairo operations. Growth on Europe was 4%, East Africa 3% while Kenya remained largely unchanged as there was no significant new operation in this region. The overall seat occupancy dropped by 1.4% to 75.2% compared to prior year’s level of 76.6%.

Passenger Yields

Growth in yields were realised in Kenya by 7% and West and Central Africa by 2%. East Africa and Southern Africa remained flat at close to prior year’s level. Europe dropped by 2%, Middle East, Asia & Far East dropped by 5% and Northern Africa by 8%. Overall, yields declined by 2% partly due to a greater proportion of long haul route expansion with it’s normally lower yields than short haul.

Cargo

Overall, tonnage grew by 15% and yields increased by 3% across the network.

Costs

Global fuel prices during the period under review averaged over 22% higher than the corresponding period last year but the impact of this was reduced to 16% (in USD terms) as a consequence of the Company’s hedging programme. The fuel cost, net of hedging benefit, was 26% above prior year driven largely by price increase of 15% and increased consumption in US gallons of 13% in line with the increased capacity offered. This was partly mitigated by a 4% appreciation of the Kenya Shilling to the US$.
The increase in overheads was 11.6% due mainly to increased level of operations but remained stable at 16% of revenue. Lower finance costs are due to increased interest income on increased cash balances, partly offset by the additional financing costs of the two new Boeing 777s delivered part way through the first half of 2005/06.

Prospects
Whilst the Board remains optimistic that the Company will continue to grow during the remainder of the financial year, the cost of jet fuel and security remain the greatest threats to profitability, with increasing levels of competition in the region continuing to be a challenge to achieving attractive yields.
Nevertheless, the Company is committed to continued expansion with new routes starting to Paris on 26th October 2006 and Mayotte/Comoros on 16th November 2006. Additionally, a fourth new Boeing 777 is due for delivery in February 2007 to facilitate further expansion on existing routes and the Board have decided to replace the current fleet of two Saab aircraft with regional jets.
The Board would like to take this opportunity to thank all the staff, management, suppliers and loyal customers who have contributed to this continued growth.
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Old October 28th, 2006, 10:37 AM   #254
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Kenya Airways half-year profit climbs to Sh3.4bn


Kenya Airways has shrugged off high fuel prices to record an 8.9 per cent rise in pre-tax profit to Sh3.4 billion for the six months ending September 30.

During the same period last year the airline returned Sh3.1 billion. Its total revenue grew 12.3 per cent to Sh28.4 billion from Sh25.3 billion.

However, this growth is slower than the record 26 per cent rise in pre-tax profit to Sh6.9 billion for the 2005/2006 financial year.

The bulk of revenues during the six months was earned from carrying passengers, who brought in Sh24.2 billion, up from Sh21.8 billion last year, followed by cargo business at Sh2.8 billion from Sh2.4 billion.

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But income from handling services declined to Sh541 million from Sh587 million.

The airline earned Sh22.7 billion from international routes, with 33 per cent of it coming from European destinations. Domestic flights generated Sh1.5 billion, up from Sh1.4 billion last year.

"All our market segments recorded growth, but Europe remains our biggest market, providing 94 per cent of revenues earned from international routes," Kenya Airways finance director Neil Canty told an investor briefing in Nairobi yesterday.

The airline’s total expenditure shot up 14.4 per cent to Sh24.3 billion mainly due to rising expenses on fuel which increased from Sh6 billion last year to Sh7.6 billion. Employee costs also went up 18.2 per cent to Sh2.5 billion, as the company hired more engineers.

Managing director Titus Naikuni, told the investors at the function held in Nairobi's Serena Hotel, that the airline benefited from the global economic growth and the recovery of Africa’s economy, but fuel prices remained a problem. "The good news is that we started seeing fuel prices declining but they remain higher than they were three years ago," he added.

In 2001, the airline’s expenditure on fuel accounted for 17 per cent of its total costs. Fuel now represents 30.6 per cent of all cost up from 27.3 per cent last year. "Every 1 per cent increase in the unit price of fuel reduce profit after tax by Sh53.5 million," Mr Canty added.

However, the airline signed a contract with a bank to guarantee fixed fuel prices up to April 2007, to hedge against sudden increases in global oil prices. Currently, the airline has hedged 80 per cent of requirements during the period.

This arrangement means that the airline gets 80 per cent of its fuel consumption at a fixed price to cushion itself from sudden global fuel prices changes, and allow the company time to decide the next course of action.

Mr Naikuni appealed to the Government to exempt the airline from paying value added tax (VAT), saying that it reduces the firm's competitiveness against other airlines which do not pay VAT to their respective governments.
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Old October 28th, 2006, 08:15 PM   #255
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great news about all those african airports, my dad went to south africa in 2002 on a city group tour of my city and the pictures he took were amazing, i was really impresse.
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Old October 29th, 2006, 05:34 AM   #256
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Ethiopian airline accuses rival of freezing it out

ADDIS ABABA, Oct 28, 2006 (AFP) - Ethiopia's national airline, Ethiopian Airlines, accused rival Kenya Airways of unfair trade practices on Saturday, as a row broke out between east Africa's two leading carriers.

Company chief Girma Wake said Kenya Airways had blocked it from flying to three regional destinations, Entebbe, Kigali and Bujumbura, from its Nairobi hub despite Ethiopia allowing it intra-African flights from Addis Ababa.

"Kenya Airways' decision is not in conformity with the agreement we have with it, neither with the COMESA agreement and this is not good for Kenya," Girma said, referring to the regional east and southern Africa trading bloc.

"Legally, we have the right to fly from Nairobi to these places," he told reporters at a news conference called to release results from the last financial year.

"We don't prevent them from carrying passengers between Addis and Djibouti, and we won't," Girma said, maintaining the move was retaliation for Ethiopia's refusal to allow Kenya Airways to fly to Jeddah and Dubai from Addis Ababa.

He said the decision was misguided because Jeddah, in Saudi Arabia, and Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, were in the Middle East and not Africa, where COMESA open skies policies apply.

"As far as I know these destinations are not in Africa," Girma said. "For us it is a matter of principles. We are for the liberalisation of the flights in Africa, for openness."

In Nairobi, Kenya Airways officials could not be reached for comment on the matter on Saturday and Girma said the company had not yet responded to an Ethiopian Airlines complaint.

"For three weeks, I'm waiting for a reply," he said.

State-run Ethiopian Airlines and private Kenya Airways, in which the Dutch carrier KLM owns a 26-percent stake, are among Africa's leading airlines and the two biggest in east Africa.

On Saturday, Ethiopian announced a 57-percent drop in profits over the past year due to soaring fuel prices and payments for new aircraft that overwhelmed a healthy rise in passenger and cargo loads.

On Friday, Kenya Airways said posted a nearly nine percent boost in earnings.
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Old October 29th, 2006, 05:35 AM   #257
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Libya gets first Boeing airliner in 30 years

TRIPOLI, Oct 28, 2006 (AFP) - A Boeing jetliner will be delivered to Libya Sunday for the first time in 30 years after the privately owned Buraq Air airline bought six of the US-made aircraft, the company said Saturday.

"Buraq Air will take delivery tomorrow (Sunday) of a Boeing 737-800," the carrier's Moncef Elies told AFP.

In February last year the company signed a contract with Boeing to buy six 737-800s for 366 million dollars, its chairman Mohammed Abedel Aziz said. The price of the contract includes aircrew training and maintenance.

A second aircraft will be delivered in mid-November, Elies said, without saying when the airline expects the final four aircraft to enter service.

Buraq Air, Libya's first private airline, was established in 2001. It currently owns six aircraft with seven more on lease, and operates services between the interior and the main coastal cities of Tripoli and Benghazi.

The modernisation of its fleet will enable Buraq Air to compete with the country's national carrier, Libyan Airlines.

Libya and the United States began normalising relations after Tripoli's decision at the end of 2003 to renounce weapons of mass destruction.

The two countries now have normal diplomatic relations, and Washington has lifted most of the sanctions it imposed on Libya which for years featured on the US list of countries sponsoring terrorism.

Sanctions on Libyan air transport were lifted in July.

Washington severed ties with Libya in 1981 and began imposing sanctions two years after radical students ransacked the US embassy in Tripoli.

An alleged Libyan-backed attack on a Berlin disco popular with Americans in 1986 spurred the US to launch air raids against the Libyan capital, killing 41 people.

Libya in 2003 accepted responsibility for the 1988 bombing of a US Pan Am jet over the Scottish town of Lockerbie that killed 270 people, and agreed to pay families of victims 10 million dollars each in compensation.
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Old October 29th, 2006, 05:37 AM   #258
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Ethiopian Airlines profits slump on higher fuel costs

ADDIS ABABA, Oct 28, 2006 (AFP) - Soaring fuel costs caused an 57 percent drop in Ethiopian Airlines profits over the past year, despite an increase in passenger and cargo loads, the state-run company said Saturday.

The firm's chief executive Girma Wake said profits plunged by the equivalent of 32.6 million dollars (26 million euros) due to higher world oil prices and payments for new planes between the 2005 and 2006 financial years.

"Net profit decreased... mainly because of increases in oil prices and payments for new aircraft," he said, adding that fuel cost the airline 1.86 billion dollars over the period, or 36 percent of operating expenses .

Girma gave the amount of the decline as from 309.9 million to 133.6 million Ethiopian birr (37 million dollars, 29 million euros to 16 million dollars, 12.5 million euros).

Higher oil costs overwhelmed a healthy 13.5 percent increase in passengers, from 1.55 million in 2004-2005 to 1.76 million, and a similar boost in cargo, mainly of meat and flowers that Ethiopia exports chiefly to Europe, he said.

At the same time, Girma expressed hopes for recovery as fuel prices gradually come down and the Ethiopian carrier expands its routes in the face of new competition, notably from KLM, Emirates, and Turkish Airlines.

He said the company expected to boost its passenger load to 2.9 million in the coming year, an 18.8 percent increase that would raise total revenue by 26.3 percent.

New routes for Ethiopian Airlines will include Monrovia, Zanzibar, for which it suspended service six years ago, Juba in southern Sudan and Bahrain, he said.

Girma added that the company was not yet ready for privatization but that he believed it would be a "one-billion-dollar airline by 2010."

"Sooner or later it will be time when Ethiopian will be very attractive to buy," he said. "For the moment I think we are not ready.

Ethiopian Airlines is among Africa's leading carriers flying to 47 destinations, 28 of them within the continent. It has a fleet of 21 passenger and cargo planes, many of them Boeings.

On Friday, one of its chief rivals, Kenya Airways, posted a nearly nine percent boost in earnings due to higher passenger loads that overcame higher fuel costs.
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Old October 29th, 2006, 03:14 PM   #259
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Over 100 feared killed in Nigeria air crash

LAGOS, Oct 29, 2006 (AFP) - Over 100 people were feared killed Sunday when a commercial airliner crashed moments after takeoff in the Nigerian capital Abuja, industry sources said.

"The ADC plane took off this morning from Lagos to Sokoto en route to Abuja with around 110 passengers and crew. After dropping some passengers in Abuja, it then took off for Sokoto (north). Some moments after taking off, it lost control and crashed," the source told AFP.
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Old October 29th, 2006, 10:47 PM   #260
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NEW PICTURES

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkylineTurbo View Post
KOTOKA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT EXPANSION, GHANA
Kotoka International Airport serves Accra, which is the capital of Ghana. The massive expansion in usage of the airport has led to calls for upgrading. Passenger usage has increased at an average of 6% per annum throughout the 1990s and cargo usage has risen by as much as 15% per annum. Such a phenomenal rate of growth forces further expansion in the airport facilities to keep pace.

The latest improvements to the airport are part of an ongoing programme. The first phase was financed through international development funding sources and was completed in 1993. The second phase will be financed from commercial revenues, with the aid of the UK export credit guarantee agency.

The sponsor of the airport improvement programme is the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), which is an agency of the Ghanaian government. The government’s backing and the involvement of foreign development agencies are both linked to the airport’s importance to the Ghanaian economy as a whole.

PROJECT MAKE-UP

Firms that bid for phase 2 included Bouygues and Dumez from France, Fitzpatrick and Taylor Woodrow of the UK, Bilfinger & Berger from Germany, Dragados from Spain, Skanska from Sweden and Vermeer from the Netherlands. Siemens Plessey, which carried out the first phase in the early 1990s, chose not to bid for the second phase.

The Swedish contractor, Skanska, and its consortium won the contract. The total contract was worth SEK 590 million ($74 million) and Skanska’s share was about 40% (just under $30 million). Skanska International Construction pursued the project through Skanska Jensen International, which managed the consortium comprising the local branch of an Irish civil engineering company, PW Ghana and the Danish Intertec.

PHASE 2

The second phase of the airport improvement originally involved the renovation and expansion of the terminal buildings, fire station and cold-storage facilities as well as the renovation and construction of new platforms. The fire station, cold-storage facilities and taxiway upgrade have all now been removed from the expansion programme in order to concentrate funding on the terminal buildings.

Improvements to the terminal buildings include the refurbishment and enlargement of the departure check-in area, incorporating new conveyors and other equipment to improve passenger handling and comfort as well as the installation of air conditioning in the immigration area. The communication facilities in the terminal will also be renovated. The baggage handling hall for arrivals will be given a new conveyor system in order to maximise efficient throughput and the terminal forecourt will be remodelled with a dual carriage way, departure and arrival vehicular areas, and car parks. The facilities for 'meeters and greeters' will also be improved to make the airport seem less congested.

The 03-21 runway was extended by 150m at the 03 stopway and 400m at the 21 end threshold, to allow a fully laden 747 to take off. This greatly enhances Kotoka's ability to handle air freight.

AIRPORT CITY

In 1998, the GCAA announced plans to develop the 40+ acre site in front of the airport as an 'airport city'. This involves the development of roads, communication facilities, power distribution, lighting, water supply, sewage treatment, parking lots, landscaping, drainage, walkways and other ancillary works. The lots on the site are parcelled out among private developers.

FINANCE

The second phase of the project is being financed by loans from the Hong Kong Chinese bank HSBC, British Paribas and Ghana's Ecobank, with support from the export credit organisations ECGD in the UK, EKN in Sweden and EKF in Denmark. The banks provided a $44.5 million loan, which was underwritten by the export agencies. The two Scandinavian agencies are reinsuring ECGD for the supply of equipment from Europe. The UK loan is the largest element to be supplied by any single organisation.
So do you have any new pictures of the new Kotoka International Airport so far when it comes to the expansion project?
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