Angola national carrier, TAAG Angola has commenced flight operations into Nigeria’s aviation industry after 50 years of it existence.
The airline in its inaugural flight into Nigeria, arrived the Murtala Muhammed International Airport with 170 passengers from the country and other dignitaries on a B737-800.
The aircraft which arrived the Murtala Muhammed International Airport about 2pm was received by top dignitaries from the Nigerian Immigration service, Angola’s Ambassador to Nigeria, and official from Nigeria’s aviation industry.
Speaking at a reception to formally welcome the airline, President TAAG Angola, Helder Preza said it was a dream comes true for the airline which had wanted to operate into the Nigerian aviation industry for a long time.
He said the airline is optimistic that its operation into Nigeria’s aviation sector will be successful adding that the carrier hopes to increase its frequency in the sector by January 2020.
Preza stated that with increased flights into the Nigeria, the airlines may also consider spreading it route network to other West Africa countries in the near future.
He said the airline will operate twice weekly flight operations into the country, which are Monday and Friday.
Commenting on the ease of getting a visa for Nigerians willing to travel to Angola, the TAAG president stated his country will be working closely with Nigerian authorities to facilitate the movement of people between the two countries.
On competition on the route, he said: “We will let the customer decide which airline they will choose. Our aim is to provide better services, better connections and on time departures.” This is our venture to increase our network, promote our destination and other tourist attractions.
“And as regards open sky for Africa, as you know this is a policy issue but we as an airlines believe that we should open our sky to foreign competition and let the best improve.”
Also, Angola ambassador to Nigeria, Eustaquio Januario Quibato who spoke at the event said it is an opportunity for both countries to strengthen bilateral relations between Angola and Nigeria.
The ambassador Eustaquio Januario Quibato invited all potential Nigerian investors, and others, to invest in Angola, taking into account the secure business environment, the high profit rates of the Angolan market, the protection of private investment by the State, network infrastructure and support, as well as the geo-strategic position in the SADC and ECCAS.
Representative of the Nigerian Ambassador to Angola, Osuobeni Rawlings, said: “It is a noble achievement today seeing TAAG in Nigeria. With this inaugural flight, it is important that both countries improve on its joint commission on business to further strengthen the ties between Nigeria and Angola.”
By Friday Nwosu