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Mahama promises establishment of new airline


President John Dramani Mahama says under the Public Private Partnership (PPP) initiative his government will partner the private sector to establish new national airline to meet the current economic demands in the aviation industry.
According to the President, feasibility studies have taken place and the new airline project is set to take off this year.
The country’s national airline, Ghana Airways, ceased operations in 2010 due to financial and operational challenges.
Addressing parliament on the state of the nation last week, President Mahama hinted that feasibility for the construction of aerodromes in some regional capitals around the country will also take place this year.
“Expansion of airport in Kumasi, Tamale, Sunyani and Takoradi, feasibility study of aerodromes in Ho, Cape Coast, Koforidua, Bolgatanga would be undertaken this year. We will also begin feasibility on the establishment of a new national airline in collaboration with the private sector under a PPP arrangement," he said.
Meanwhile, the country manager for British Airways, James Woodbridge,
Has suggested that if and when a new national airline is established, it should concentrate more on regional routes in order to build the brand before considering international routes. “In my opinion, a new national airline should build its brand on regional routes, this will enable it build alliance with other international airlines to fly customers from one place to the other without difficulties”. He added that should a new national airline start flying longhauls, it may inconvenience transit customers.
with regards to interests of new airlines flying into Ghana, he advised that the country should expedite expansion works at the Kotoka International Airport before granting other new airlines permission to fly into the country. He explained that the congestion at the airport coupled with the limited infrastructure will worsen if other new airlines are allowed to fly into the country now.
According to the President Mahama, he has directed the transport and finance ministers to begin investigations into unauthorised fees charged at the country’s ports and airports.
“As we continue to expand the infrastructure at the Tema and Takoradi ports we are also focused on the construction of a new modern sea port in the Western Region. I have directed the minister of finance and transport to undertake investigations of an unauthorized fees and charges at our airport and ports which are putting unbearable pressure on our importers,” he added.
The president also mentioned that his government has taken a decisive step to locate private sector coordination under the office of the president, and designated a minister of state in the presidency to coordinate and supervise private-sector initiatives to effectively facilitate private sector development.

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