Ethiopian Airlines has released its results for the period ended on June 30, which shows an 18 percent increase in cargo volume to 400,339 tonnes, compared to the same period last year.
The airline has added eight new destinations to its network during the quarter, including Geneva, Chicago, Bahrain, Kaduna, Buenos Aires, Kisangani and Mbuji-Mayi in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Nosy-Be, Madagascar. The Addis Ababa-based carrier also enhanced its fleet with 14 new aircraft over the same period.
Some industry leaders have been investing in the anticipated growth of Ethiopia’s economy, which coincides with the end of the 20-year-long war with its neighboring country, Eritrea. DHL Global Forwarding entered into a joint venture (JV) with the airline in July to establish air, ocean and road freight services, connecting the region to the rest of the world.
Tewolde GebreMariam, group CEO of Ethiopian Airlines, said the period saw a “very tough operating and competitive environment in Africa, where jet fuel price, our main cost driver, soared during the year.” According to GebreMariam, jet fuel is 30 percent more expensive in Africa than in the rest of the world on average, “putting the continent’s carriers at a severe competitive disadvantage.”
Looking forward, GebreMariam said the airline aims to further grow its network by introducing a “record number” of modern aircraft to its fleet, and “greatly enhance the on-ground customer service at our main hub with the opening at the end of 2018 of the newly expanded and significantly upgraded airport terminals in Addis Ababa.”