Mozambique, Maputo, 26 Feb – Mozambique’s flagship carrier LAM aims to resume international flights by the end of the year, in a first phase to Lisbon, the company’s financial director Jeremias Tchamo stated.
The Lisbon-Maputo route is currently operated by TAP Air Portugal and under a code-sharing agreement LAM Mozambique Airlines has the right to a certain number of seats on each flight.
Tchamo made his comments on Thursday in Maputo, on the sidelines of a ceremony awarding prizes to travel agencies, a competition won for tenth consecutive year by Cotur. He recalled that the company is gradually modernizing, replacing its Boeing 737-200 fleet with Bombardier 400 and Embraer 190 aircraft acquired from Brazil.
In all, LAM has acquired six new aircraft worth an overall US$100 million. Four, purchased in Brazil, have already been delivered.
The company added a new regional route to Luanda, Angola, in 2009, Tchamo said, adding that authorization from the Mozambican Civil Aviation Institute had been requested for new routes, including Maputo-Cape Town (currently operated by SAA South African Airways), Tete-Johannesburg and Nampula-Nairobi.
He did not mention the competition, although due to the recent liberalization of Mozambique’s airspace the Maputo-Johannesburg route can no longer be divided between LAM and SAA. The company TTA Airlink began operating on the route last 14 February.
LAM’s monopoly on domestic routes will also end soon, given that TTA Airlink has announced plans to begin flights from Maputo to Tete, Nampula and Beira in the near future.