South African carrier, Airlink has inaugurated its much anticipated Ugandan route on September 19 with the airline now operating 2 weekly direct flights from Johannesburg to Entebbe, operated by an embraer E190 on Wednesdays and Sundays.
“We are certain that Airlink new services, and others will help rejuvenate and nurture travel and tourism in Uganda and improve partnership between our respective nation and regional markets,” said Uganda’s transport minister Fred Byamukama at the inaugural event.
“Trade relations between Uganda and South Africa continue to grow from strength to strength. South Africa has been an important source of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) for Uganda especially in the sectors of mobile telecommunications, brewing and beverages, finance services, wholesale and retail, poultry and energy,” he added.
The new launch is also expected to increase bilateral ties between South Africa and Uganda in the tourism sector.
Airlink will rival Uganda’s flag carrier Uganda airlines on the Johannesburg and Entebbe Route also launched earlier this year with both airlines launching the route at a time when air services were either closed or curtailed because of Covid.
Uganda’s passenger traffic reduced from 1.98 million passengers in 2019 to 565,541 passengers in 2020. But despite the significant cut in pax, cargo loads have also shown a slight increase in volume from 42,000 metric tonnes recorded in 2019 to 58,898 tonnes recorded in 2020.
By Victor Odhiambo