Pursue partnerships, Mpofu tells AirZim

HARARE - National carrier, Air Zimbabwe (AirZim), should consider partnering other airlines as part of strategies to boost its revenue, Transport minister Obert Mpofu said.

“I am sure there are many airlines which might be willing to partner with us,” he said during a familiarisation tour of the parastatal on Wednesday.

Mpofu — who vowed to revive the embattled airline — urged AirZim’s management to conduct a research in the continent and find out which airlines might be agreeable to the company’s terms. “Technically our aircraft are under-utilised.

“You can only increase capacity if you have more routes, so let us get all the aircraft to fly. Aircraft should be flying not kept on the ground.

“If you have the equipment, then do it and we will regularise it,” he said.

This comes as aviation experts have proclaimed that airline partnerships can play a key role in economic success. But in order to attain these benefits, airlines need to tackle challenges particularly hampering competitiveness and innovation.

Recently, Singapore Airlines and the Virgin Australia group of airlines signed a landmark agreement that enables them to establish a long-term alliance.

Under the agreement, the two airlines proposed to code-share on each other’s international and domestic flights, offer reciprocal frequent flyer programme benefits and lounge access and co-ordinate schedules between Singapore and Australia and beyond to provide seamless connections.

Last year Qantas Airways agreed to form a 10-year alliance with Emirates as it looks to turn around its loss-making international operations.

The two carriers will collaborate on pricing, sales and flight scheduling.

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