Brussels Airlines upcoming winter season will bring a frequency increase on many African destinations, as well as the addition of Accra (Ghana). Flights to Nairobi will be discontinued. Meanwhile, a Congolese subsidiary has bitten the dust.
From the end of October Brussels Airlines will serve Accra 4 times a week. The Ghanese capital is the Belgian national airline’s 12th African destination. The frequency to Togo’s capital Lomé
will be increased from 2 to 4 weekly flights, as will be the case for Freetown (Sierra Leone) and Monrovia (Liberia). Cotonou (Benin) and Ouagadougou (Burkiona Faso) will be served 3 times a
week, an increase of one weekly flight. Being well served by Brussels Airlines’ part-owner and partner Lufthansa, Nairobi will be withdrawn from the Belgian carrier’s network. The company will
maintain its daily flight from Brussels to New York JFK.
However, as in previous years, the flights to Washington will be suspended during the winter season. The entire long-haul flights of Brussels Airlines are operated by Airbus A330-200/-300 aircraft, offering sufficient lower deck capacity for cargo carriage.
Subsidiary Korongo Airlines is insolvent
In a release Brussels Airlines announced that Korongo Airlines of the Democratic Republic of Congo has ceased operations and filed for insolvency. The Lubumbashi-based carrier was founded in 2009 as a joint venture between Brussels Airlines (40.4%), the Forrest Group (39.6%) and local Congolese investors (20%). Recently, Korongo’s only Boeing 737 was severely damaged at the Congolese airport Mbuji Mayi with no chance to repair the aircraft. Maintenance and operational conditions in the region are extremely difficult for any airline, partly because of poor infrastructure, states Brussels Airlines. Given these circumstances and in view of plans announced by the Kinshasa-based government to stop supporting Korongo any further and start an own national airline the decision was taken to cease the activities of the Congolese carrier. Therefore, plans have to be scrapped to establish a local African airline offering regional feeder services for Brussels Airlines for both passengers and smaller cargo items.
Marcel Schoeters / Heiner Siegmund