Kenya Airways, Kenya’s flag carrier, has announced a new service connecting the capitals of Ghana and Senegal from December 11th. This is the first sign that African governments are serious about implementing the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM).
The twice-weekly service, which complements the airline’s existing schedule to both destinations, will increase the choice between Nairobi and Accra to nine weekly flights and four to Dakar.
This follows the new Nairobi-Mombasa-Dubai service, also due to launch in December, reflecting KQ’s efforts to implement its growth plans following the two-year disruption of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The ease with which a Kenyan airline can select intermediate routes between Accra and Dakar without oncoming traffic from a Ghanaian airline to Kenya signals the start of a long overdue open skies era in Africa.
Kenya and Ghana were among 15 African countries that signed up in Dakar last week for a pilot project to test air service operations under SAATM. Under the current restrictions, these flights will operate under fifth freedom rights in accordance with the terms agreed in the bilateral air services agreement.
According to Kenya Airways Commercial and Customer Director Julius Theroux, the new connection will “give our guests more travel and connectivity options in West Africa”. Commercial Area, They are two essential pillars for Africa’s growth and develop and deepen our network connections within the continent .”
KQ hopes to capitalize on existing demand from business, business and leisure travelers between Ghana and Senegal to support the service, which will be the first direct connection between two West African capitals.