Ghana’s quest to become the aviation hub in the West African sub-region has received a further boost as a new airline has begun operations in the country.
The new entrant Cronos Airlines, an Equatorial Guinean airline, last week Friday began commercial flights to Accra, with the aim of boosting tourism and trade between the countries.
The airline will operate two flights a week between Accra and Malabu on Mondays and Fridays and provide easy access to Sao Tome and Duala.
Mr. George Kaiafas, Chief Operating Officer of Cronos, said the route would help to boost tourism between the two countries.
He said the stable economic and political environment in Ghana attracted the airline to choose her for the airline’s operation.
Mr. Kaiafas said the operations of the airline would also deepen trade relations between the two countries.
He said the airline was confident of tapping into the growing transit passenger volumes in Ghana and Africa as a whole.
The transit passenger volumes increased from 14,000 in July 2015 to over 22, 000 in July this year. General international passenger departures also increased by about 6 per cent; from about 72,000 in July 2015 to about 76,000 in July 2016.
Currently, Africa remains the continent with the largest number of French speakers. The International Organisation of La Francophonie (OIF) estimates that there are 96.2 million French-speakers in Africa.
About 13 countries in Africa have French as the language of instruction at the pre-tertiary level while other countries have French or bilingual studies at the tertiary level of education.
Mrs. Abena Agyeman-Rebollar, Business Development Manager of Cronos Airlines, said there was traffic on the route as many oil and gas employees travel between Malabu to Ghana but currently what exists is a weekly flight between the two countries.
This difficulty of moving between the two countries, she explained, prompted the decision by Cronos to start the flights.
She said the airline was open to expansion by introducing bigger planes if the market required it.
She disclosed that the airline would fly to other destinations in the sub-region including Cotonou, Port Harcourt Nigeria, Niamey, Duala and Johannesburg.
Mr. Jesus Mba Belba Abaha, Ambassador of Equatorial Guinea to Ghana, congratulated Cronos for initiating the flights, saying that the start of commercial flights between the two countries will help to further strengthen the relationship between Ghana and Equatorial Guinea.
By David Adadevoh