LEADING European Airline, Lufthansa of Germany wants to resume flights to Zimbabwe with options to land in Harare or the resort town of Victoria Falls.
Reportfocusnews understands talks are in progress between Zimbabwean government and the airliner which suspended flights to Harare in 2008 in the height of hyperinflation.
Transport and Infrastructure Development Minister Jorum Gumbo told journalists recently at the launch of the Ethiopian Airlines’ maiden landing in Victoria Falls that German Lufthansa was one of the major airlines that had expressed interest to fly into Zimbabwe.
“We are talking to a number of airlines and as transport we have to assist the Ministry of Tourism to market the country’s destinations and infrastructure and bring as many tourists as possible,” said Minister Gumbo.
“Lufthansa and British Airways have started approaching us. Lufthansa wants to start new routes.”
The Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (CAAZ) is also busy on the ground courting airlines, with the latest move in Zambia a few days ago where official from the aviation authority attended an airports council meeting hosted by Zambian Airlines and highlighted on advanced talks with Lufthansa.
The airliner hasn’t confirmed dates though.
Minister Gumbo said government was geared to start upgrading of Harare International Airport next year so the facility relives its 1990s era when it was the hub of Southern Africa.
Other airports earmarked for upgrading, to match international standards as Victoria Falls International Airport which was refurbished to the tune of $150 million, are Buffalo Range, Masvingo, Kariba, Mutare as well as Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo International in Bulawayo.
Last month, the local aviation industry saw South African Airways launching the first ever 222-seater wide bodied airbus to land in Victoria Falls, Ethiopian Airlines last week while Kenyan Airways will launch on May 1 followed by Air Link of South Africa later.