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  • I read this in the FT on the train this morning...

    High quality global journalism requires investment. Please share this article with others using the link below, do not cut & paste the article. See our Ts&Cs and Copyright Policy for more detail. Email [email protected] to buy additional rights. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/dc0aa020-0...#ixzz3b9cY3o9c

    Fastjet looks south to expand cut-price flights in Africa

    Kate Burgess




    Tanzanian-based budget carrier regroups after turbulent first three years

    You can see why Fastjet got its name but Slowjet would have been more accurate.
    Last week the low-cost African airline said it was using the £50m raised recently to increase its fleet of Airbus 319 “babybus” jets from three to four.


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    Sanlam, the brokers, described the deal as transformational and believes that Fastjet will turn profitable next year for the first time since its launch on Alternative Investment Market three years ago.
    But four babybuses is a long way short of the 30-strong fleet that Fastjet said in 2012 it would have by now.
    Fastjet was dreamt up by David Lenigas, then chairman of mini-Africa conglomerate Lonrho, and Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou of easyJet who talked of Africa as “the aviation industry’s last frontier”. Together they conjured a vision of a lookalike easyJet bringing air travel to Africa’s 1bn-plus population and running short-haul routes between Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
    Sir Stelios and crew, including Ed Winter, pilot and former operating officer of easyJet, supplied the know-how on running a low-cost carrier. Lonrho supplied its local carrier Fly 540 in exchange for a 74 per cent stake.
    But there have been more pies in the sky than Fastjet aircraft and the shares are a fraction of what they were.
    Chief executive Mr Winter — now 68 and who commutes to Africa from his home in the UK — admits his experience of Africa was “limited” when he joined the company.
    It took a year or so to wake up to the reality of doing business there. “I very much underestimated the time it takes to establish in Africa. The plans in 2012 were overambitious”.
    Since then Mr Lenigas has disembarked and is focused on heading up UK Oil & Gas, the Aim tiddler that recently claimed it had found a sea of oil in Surrey. Lonrho was taken private in late 2013 and sold its shares that year. Easygroup has retained a 9.9 per cent stake but its relationship with the group has been far from easy with Sir Stelios objecting publicly to Mr Winter’s pay package last year.
    I very much underestimated the time it takes to establish in Africa. The plans in 2012 were overambitious- Ed Winter, Fastjet chief executive
    Tweet this quote

    The residue of Lonrho’s Fly540 in Kenya has been sold and plans for Ghana have been shelved. Only the Tanzanian business remains.
    Now Mr Winter is trying to secure licences to fly short-haul routes in Zimbabwe and Zambia while building Fastjet anew in Uganda and Kenya. The trade links between southern and east Africa are well established, he says, and the population of just over 200m people accounts for a fifth of the continent’s national income.
    The art of airline profitability is to get enough bums on seats to cover the heavy costs of fuel and buying or leasing aircraft and have a big enough fleet to spread other overheads.
    But it is tough enough for small airlines to establish themselves in affluent and politically stable countries where people jump on aircraft as if they were buses and the infrastructure is reliable.
    Fastjet operates in a poor, largely undeveloped region prone to political upheaval and corruption with just three aircraft costing as much as $3.5m a year to lease and keep in the air.
    Mr Winter is still eloquent about the need for a low-cost carrier to “democratise” air travel in Africa”.
    Existing airlines, many of them monopolies or national flag carriers protected by local loyalties and politics and lack of competition, “gouge” their customers, he says. Passengers in Africa pay four times per seat per kilometre than they do in Europe. And that is constraining the market and hindering business.
    Fastjet’s cut-price flights between say Lake Victoria and Dar es Salaam are transfiguring Tanzania’s economy, Mr Winter claims. It could do the same for neighbours such as Zambia — which lacks a flag carrier — and Zimbabwe if Fastjet can persuade the authorities to hand it the licences to operate.
    Expanding into southern Africa should also transform Fastjet’s finances. Its business in Tanzania turned in its first ever monthly profit in December and Mr Winter and shareholders hope that is a sign of things to come.
    Mr Winter still plans to have 30 or so babybuses in the hangar by 2018. And then all he needs is a couple of million people — a mere 2 per cent of the population of east Africa — to fly Fastjet a couple of times a year. Selling 10m seats would be worth $1bn a year in revenues. “That is equivalent to 34 aircraft flying flat out,” says Mr Winter.
    Let’s hope his flight plans are more down to earth than they were three years ago. Shareholders should not rely on it



    What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
    If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

    Comment


    • Guyana Goldfields Inc. Commences Mill Commissioning; First Gold Pour Remains on Schedule for Mid-2015

      TORONTO, May 27, 2015 /CNW/ - Guyana Goldfields Inc. (TSX:GUY) (the "Company" or "GGI") is pleased to announce that the mill commissioning process has commenced and the Aurora Gold Project ("Aurora" or "the Project") remains on track for projected initial gold production in mid-2015.
      Overall, Project construction is approximately 85% complete with the Company focusing on operational readiness training and commissioning. GGI has commenced the commissioning of the following areas:
      • SAG Mill
      • Power Plant Generators
      • Water and Air Support Systems

      The Company will continue the commissioning phase during the second quarter of this year and is in the process of completing the remaining piping, electrical and surface conveyor construction. GGI is on track to start-up the gravity gold and saprolite production circuits for mid-2015 which would allow for earlier gold production (pre-commercial production) through the processing plant. The commissioning and startup of the hard rock crushing circuit is projected to be completed in the third calendar quarter of 2015.
      The mining fleet is fully operational and all materials required for construction are on site. All surface and on-site construction and bulk earthworks are completed except for the river dike and runway expansion. The Company is currently operating at peak construction and manpower levels with over 1,000 personnel at site. The operational readiness team has been hired and undergoing initial training.
      Initial open pit mining at Rory's Knoll has defined the pit outline with excavation below river level with no in-flow of water, as expected.
      The Company expects to produce between 30,000 ounces to 50,000 ounces of gold in 2015 and approximately 120,000 ounces to 140,000 ounces of gold in 2016.
      GGI has approximately US$44 million (as at March 31, 2015) of capital expenditures remaining to projected initial production. The total initial development costs for all facilities as well as mining equipment, owner's costs, indirect costs, etc., remains forecasted to beUS$249 million. The Project is tracking on budget with US$52 million available as an overrun facility, if needed.
      Scott A. Caldwell, President & CEO, commented, "The commissioning of the mill circuit is a major milestone which we've been able to deliver on schedule and brings us one step closer to initial production. I am proud of what our team has accomplished in just a little over a year. The energy at site is vibrant and I would like to thank all our employees and contractors for their dedication and excellent work. At this stage in the game, we are so close to production that it has eliminated a large portion of capital over-spending risk. Our next focus is producing ounces at or above our target for 2015 gold production and join the ranks of producers."
      About Guyana Goldfields Inc.
      Guyana Goldfields Inc. is a Canadian based company, focused on the exploration and development of gold deposits in Guyana, South America. GGI is focused on the construction and development of the Aurora Gold Project scheduled for first production in mid-2015. The Aurora Gold Project has a total gold resource of 6.54 million ounces in the measured and indicated categories (62.83 million tonnes at 3.24 g/t Au) as well as an additional 1.82 million ounces in the inferred category (16.93 million tonnes at 3.34 g/t Au). For further details, please refer to the press release dated December 9, 2013 and the report entitled "NI 43-101 Technical Report, Updated Feasibility Study – Aurora Gold Project" dated January 29, 2013 available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. GGI also holds a significant portfolio of attractive exploration properties and holds cash and cash equivalents of US$16 million as of March 31, 2015.
      Forwarding-Looking Information
      This news release contains "forward-looking information" which may include, but is not limited to, statements with respect to the estimation of mineral resources. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words and phrases such as "plans," "expects," "is expected," "budget," "scheduled," "estimates," "forecasts," "intends," "anticipates," or "believes" or variations (including negative variations) of such words and phrases, or state that certain actions, events or results "may," "could," "would," "might" or "will" be taken, occur or be achieved. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management as of the date such statements are made and are based on various assumptions.
      Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such factors include, among others, the receipt of applicable regulatory approvals, the timing of the advance of the funds pursuant to the project loan facility to fund the development and construction of the Aurora Gold Project (the "Facility"), fulfilling all conditions precedent to the advance of funds pursuant to the Facility, general business, economic, competitive, political and social uncertainties; the actual results of exploration activities; changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined; accidents, labour disputes and other risks of the mining industry; political instability; delays in obtaining governmental approvals or financing or in the completion of development or construction activities, as well as those factors discussed in the section entitled "Risk Factors" in GGI's annual information form. Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results to differ from those anticipated, estimated or intended. Forward-looking statements contained herein are made as of the date of this news release and the Company disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or results, except as may be required by applicable securities laws. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.
      SOURCE Guyana Goldfields Inc.
      For further information: Guyana Goldfields Inc., Scott A. Caldwell, President and Chief Executive Officer; Jacqueline Wagenaar, Vice President, Investor Relations & Corporate Communications, Tel: (416) 628-5936, Ext. 2295, Fax: (416) 628-5935, E-mail:[email protected], Website: www.guygold.com
      What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
      If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

      Comment


      • Patrick Mapetla – Superman on wheels

        By This Is Africa on May 29, 2015 — South African entrepreneur Patrick Mapetla was born paralysed below the waist. Naturally, his life has been incredibly difficult. But he did not let that affect his dreams. He now runs his own business making window frames and security gates








        A wise person once said “Don’t let your struggle become your identity”. It seems Patrick Mapetla gave the saying a verbatim application to his life.
        As a young person, he was raised by his mother who couldn’t afford to buy get him a wheelchair even though he was born paralysed from the waist down. Because of that, he was unable to attend school until he turned 18.
        It was during that period that he decided to build himself a wheelchair using bicycle frames and wheels from wheelbarrows. This enabled him to begin his education. However, seven years later he had to drop out as he was forced to travel in his home-made wheelchair on gravel roads. But even this didn’t stop him.

        Last year, through sheer determination, the 38 year-old entrepreneur decided to start his own business of making window frames.
        “I went to hardware stores in town and researched the different metals,” he told the Daily Sun newspaper, “I didn’t have any tools but two good Samaritans in the village lent me a grinder and a welding machine…in the beginning, it was difficult to use the machines. I would often fall over.”
        But soon enough, he began attracting a sizeable customer base.
        “With the money I made, I was able to buy myself a portable light welding machine and a grinder,” he said.
        His determination and shamelessness at being disabled propelled him towards success He now runs a viable business and looks to pass his skills on to the youth.
        What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
        If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

        Comment


        • http://www.rjrnewsonline.com/opinion...icas-prospects

          some ideas that made me think......And Andre comes with some interesting ideas..

          "We have what it takes to move forward" ... I agree with alot of this young man... listen to the audio on this link... one of the most powerful ideas and put through the ideas of the economy.....

          Pondering Jamaica's prospects

          10:59 pm, Mon May 11, 2015








          02:20

          10:49














          Jamaica's current economic difficulties, highlighted by the unsettled state of public sector wage negotiations and the impact of drought and bush fires on agricultural production were some of the issues discussed on RJR's That's a Rap, RJR's weekly news review show, on Sunday.
          Dr. Andre Haughton, lecturer in the Department of Economics at the University of the West Indies, attorney at law Alecia Johns, PhD, and Reverend Marjorie Lewis, PhD, discussed these concerns with host Earl Moxam.
          Negative
          "These negative externalities that we've been encountering over the past couple of years really have been having a negative impact on growth in output, especially farming," Dr. Haugton observed.
          Against that background, he said the drought of 2014, "should have indicated to us that we definitely needed to put infrastructure in place to help our farming sector, going forward."
          Regarding the current spate of fires affecting coffee and other crops in East Rural St. Andrew and parts of St. Thomas, he said crop insurance should have been in place to guard against eventualities such as these.
          "When I look at commodities in general... in this globalized atmosphere, insurance really should be playing its part in helping the farmers to recover their losses."
          Growth agenda
          Reverend Lewis questioned "how we accumulate the capital to get the growth agenda going," given the historical economic and social disadvantages that have bedeviled the the country over the years.
          In response, Dr. Haughton asserted that Jamaica does "have what is necessary to move us forward as a country." Highlighting the "mismanagement" of public spending and grant funding receipts "over the last 20 years," he asserted that "if we really wanted to see certain basic things improved, then we could see it improved.
          He highlighted prospects for irrigation schemes in the country's farming heatland of St. Elizabeth, as one example of "very simple infrastructure platforms that agriculture requires."
          Brain drain
          Alecia Johns worried aloud about the dimished prospects for some of her contemporaries who, "looking at the dollars and cents... looking at the bank book... what it means to go to the supermarket to fill your grocery basket, and it's really just not feasible for a lot of young professionals, particularly those with student loans."
          In the face of such odds, she concluded that the risk of them migrating "is definitely going to increase."
          Optimism
          Injecting a note of optimism into the discussion, Haughton stressed that the "bad culture" of failing to organize properly for success can change.
          "With one action you earn five dollars. If they can realise that with a more prudent behavior they can earn ten dollars then we will start doing the thing the way it is supposed to be done," he argued.
          With the present "back against the wall" position of the country, he asserted that there "has to be change!"
          The audio excerpt from the show starts with Dr. Haugton commenting on the setbacks to agriculture.



          What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
          If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

          Comment


          • PetroVietnam, Gazprom Seal Agreement to Develop 2 Fields in Russia

            by Chee Yew Cheang
            |
            Rigzone Staff
            |
            Tuesday, June 23, 2015

            Vietnam's state-owned energy company Vietnam National Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam) and Russian partner Gazprom sealed a deal for Gazpromviet -- their joint venture firm -- to explore and develop the Nagumanovskoye and Severo-Purovskoye fields in Russia, according to a report by local media The Voice of Vietnam (VOV) Monday.
            The agreement, signed June 18 during the 19th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum in Russia last week, sets out the conditions for both parties to develop the Nagumanovskoye oil, gas and condensate field in the Orenburg Region and the Purpovskoye gas and condensate oil field in the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Area, where the VOV said Gazpromviet "has been permitted to exploit by local authorities."

            PetroVietnam and Gazprom inked a framework agreement in 2014 for joint development of the two fields through Gazpromviet, which holds a subsurface use license for the fields. Gazprom has a 51 percent stake in Gazpromviet, with the remainder held by PetroVietnam.
            According to Gazprom, the Nagumanovskoye field holds 204.8 billion cubic feet (Bcf) or 5.8 billion cubic meters (Bcm) of proven in-place gas reserves, 15.17 million barrels (1.683 million tons) of recoverable condensate reserves and 7.58 million barrels (960,000 tons) of recoverable oil reserves, while the Severo-Purovskoye field contains an estimated 1.60 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) or 45.5 Bcm of proven in-place gas reserves and 61.52 million barrels (6.826 million tons) of recoverable condensate reserves.
            "The legally binding Agreement on major terms sets forth the key provisions of the projects, including the work schedule and sales strategy as well as common terms and conditions for financing and the price setting. I am confident that our experience in joint hydrocarbon development in Vietnam will help us be successful in large-scale projects across Russia,” Gazprom Chairman Alexey Miller said in a company press release.
            PetroVietnam President and CEO Nguyen Quoc Khanh and Gazprom’s Miller also held discussions on further cooperation to expand the Dung Quat Oil Refinery -- Vietnam's only oil refinery – as well as the supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the Southeast Asian country.
            The Vietnamese national oil firm’s deal with Gazprom was not the only one concluded last week as it also entered into an agreement for oil and gas cooperation with Algeria’s Sonatrach over the next three years.
            - See more at: http://www.rigzone.com/news/oil_gas/....ghGchNlo.dpuf




            Under the agreement, Sonatrach would “facilitate PetroVietnam’s exploration and production adjacent to Bir Seba field (in Algeria) and provide oil and gas services to Vietnam,” PetroVietnam said in a June 17 announcement.
            Bir Seba, which is expected to flow first oil in the third quarter of this year at 20,000 barrels a day, is the first foreign project that PetroVietnam’s upstream arm PetroVietnam Exploration Production Corp. is participating as an operator.
            PetroVietnam has expanded its search for upstream assets both locally and overseas in recent years as the firm seeks to boost oil and gas supplies to meet rising domestic energy demand. Last week, PetroVietnam completed the acquisition of Chevron’s upstream assets in the country.
            - See more at: http://www.rigzone.com/news/oil_gas/....TxkMXlLG.dpuf


            Vietnam is investing overseas....PJ called last week for Jamaicans to invest overseas...


            What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
            If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

            Comment


            • Fastjet delays expansion as it issues profit warning

              By Phil Davies |29 September 2015 at 08.22 GMT 2 Comments



              African low-cost carrier Fastjet is delaying the start of operations in Zambia and Zimbabwe until later this year as it issued a profit warning.
              Interim chairman, Clive Carver, said: “As a result of slower-than-anticipated route development and the impact of weak African currencies, in particular the Tanzanian shilling against the US dollar, we now expect trading in the second half of 2015 to be materially behind management's expectations.
              The disclosure came as the airline confirmed a reduction in first half pre-tax losses to $9 million from $13.9 million in the same period in 2014.
              Revenues for the first six months of the year rose to $31.5 million from $19 million as passenger numbers grew by 56% to 363,769.
              Fastjet confirmed the addition of its first owned aircraft, bringing the fleet up to six, and may add more before the end of the year.
              Chief executive, Ed Winter, said: "Using the same assets as in H1 2014, three Airbus A319s, in H1 2015, through better utilisation we increased the number of seats flown by 56%, total revenue increased by 66% and operating losses reduced by 26%; a great achievement.
              "Since then, in Q3 2015, we have doubled the size of the fleet to six and are well on our way to having three bases, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe fully operational by the end of the year. This expansion of the fleet and network is particularly important in laying the foundations for profitable growth in 2016.
              "Whilst we have seen these very significant improvements, African currencies have lost considerable value against the US dollar, which combined with a worldwide reduction in commodity prices, has caused an economic downturn in both Tanzania and Zambia.
              “In addition, the start of operations in Zambia and Zimbabwe has been delayed into Q4. Accordingly the board has downgraded its forecast for full year 2015 but is confident of meeting its expectations for 2016."
              What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
              If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

              Comment


              • Fastjet eyes bigger slice of African pie

                October 5 2015 at 07:30am
                By Tawanda Karombo Comment on this story
                INDEPENDENT MEDIA
                Fastjet's chief executive, Ed Winter, says the budget airline is banking on punctuality and efficiency. Picture: SuppliedHarare - Africa focused budget flights operator, Fastjet, is lining up an integrated regional operation after initial forays into Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Zambia, riding on rising flights that have surged by 56 percent in the half year to June.
                The company could start Zimbabwe operations as early as next month, people familiar with developments said.
                The company already has a plane for its Zimbabwe domestic routes at Harare International Airport.
                “The first flight will be in the next three to four weeks. We are currently carrying out test flights to Victoria Falls, as well as Bulawayo,” an executive involved in the licensing process said.
                Zimbabwe has adopted a softer approach towards international investors as it seeks to grow the aviation industry.
                The airline industry is important for the country’s efforts to boost the tourism sector, a key foreign currency and revenue earner for the cash-strapped government.
                Fastjet is now awaiting the final licensing procedures in Zimbabwe and these will be wrapped up in the next few weeks. It is banking on its experience in Tanzania to rapidly consolidate the Zimbabwean domestic flights and enlist flights to other cities on the continent.
                “The bigger picture is for flights across sub-Saharan Africa once we have set-up the Zimbabwe and Tanzania operations. In the future we would want flights from these countries to South Africa, as well as Kenya and Nigeria,” added the official in a discussion with Business Report.
                Fastjet has six planes for its Africa aviation operations and is buoyant after passenger volumes increased by 56 percent in the half year to June 30.
                Ed Winter has previously said by phone from London that Fastjet was banking on a leaner organisation, efficiency and punctuality. “Our flights are dependable and we are efficient as we utilise modern aircraft,” he said.
                Most airlines in Africa struggle with punctuality while those run by the state, such as Air Zimbabwe and SAA, often make losses.
                The Fastjet Tanzania operation attained a punctuality rate of 91 percent.
                Air Zimbabwe currently dominates domestic flights in Zimbabwe but Winter does not see the state airline as the major competition.
                He wants Fastjet to empower more people to fly through low budget flight.




                What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
                If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

                Comment


                • fastjet Plc Granted Air Operator Certificate in Zimbabwe

                  Posted by: giles.arbor 7th October 2015

                  fastjet Plc (LON:FJET), Africa’s low-cost airline, has today announced that it was yesterday granted an Air Operator Certificate (AOC) by the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (CAAZ). The AOC designates fastjet Zimbabwe Limited as a Zimbabwean airline licenced to operate both domestic and international routes within and from Zimbabwe. fastjet Zimbabwe is now the second airline in the fastjet network.


                  fastjet Zimbabwe obtained its Air Service Licence in March 2015 and has since been working with CAAZ to obtain the AOC, which was granted yesterday. The process involved an in depth review of fastjet Zimbabwe’s safety management system, operational manuals and structures, its senior staff, its fleet, maintenance facilities and technical capability.
                  The government will now designate fastjet Zimbabwe as a Zimbabwean airline on international routes to a number of East and Southern African countries.
                  fastjet Zimbabwe plans to expand rapidly, creating a comprehensive network of domestic and regional destinations.
                  Seats will be put on sale today for the first fastjet Zimbabwe route, linking Harare to Victoria Falls initially three times a week. Fares start at $20 exclusive of taxes for a one way flight.
                  Commenting, fastjet Plc Chief Executive Officer Ed Winter said: “Adding a second fastjet airline to our network is an incredibly significant milestone on our path to becoming the most successful pan African low cost airline.
                  “We recognised the real potential in Zimbabwe some time ago and have been working hard together with the relevant authorities towards this momentous day. With their support we are now in a position to launch our Zimbabwean operation.
                  “In Tanzania we have become the airline of choice, with an enviable operational reputation and market leading fares. I am confident that, with our proven low-cost model, we can replicate this success in Zimbabwe.”
                  What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
                  If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

                  Comment


                  • I have been following this company for the last few years... But i am always aware of the historical allegorical conection of europeans investing in transportation systems in Africa.... and the social impact of this investment...



                    Too much politics in skies over Africa


                    Bloomberg | 03 November, 2015 00:11

                    "We could have increased our network a lot more rapidly and brought safe and reliable travel a lot sooner if it wasn't for the level of protectionism in Africa," he said. File photo
                    Image by: Business Times



                    Airline FastJet has said its ambition to become the first discount airline spanning sub-Saharan Africa is being held back by government protectionism and unprofitable state-owned carriers that resist new entrants.

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                    "Liberalisation has to come within Africa," FastJet CEO Ed Winter said in an interview in Harare.
                    "We could have increased our network a lot more rapidly and brought safe and reliable travel a lot sooner if it wasn't for the level of protectionism in Africa," he said.
                    FastJet started flying an Airbus Group SE A319 plane in 2012 from Dar es Salaam, its main Africa base. It now has six aircraft and services eight destinations from the Tanzanian commercial capital, including Johannesburg.
                    "The continued policy in some countries about protectionism of state airlines surely can't make sense," Winter said.
                    "Why would countries put so much money into an airline when that money will be far better spent on roads, health, all those things that the people need?"
                    State-owned SAA is surviving on government-guaranteed loans and has appointed six permanent or acting CEOs in three years. Kenya Airways, which is 30% owned by the government, posted a record full-year loss earlier this year and might need a bailout of as much as $600-million (about R8.2-billion).
                    "Governments can't run airlines, it has been proven," Winter said. "Let private enterprise take its course. You will get a much better aviation landscape.
                    "Competition is good for everybody. It drives out the inefficient."
                    Winter was speaking ahead of the company's first flight between Harare and Victoria Falls, a popular tourist destination.
                    The company's plan to have bases in Ghana and Angola were put on hold last year.
                    FastJet is waiting for Zimbabwe and South Africa to agree to further routes in the region.
                    What nonsense! How can you have a revolution without shooting people ? Lenin 26th October 1917...
                    If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven: Hatuey. 2/02/1512

                    Comment

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