Ministry of Transport and Communications (MTC)
PRESS RELEASE
24/05/12
Botswana has signed another Bilateral Air Services

PRESS RELEASE

For immediate Release

Botswana has signed another Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) was signed with the state of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on the May 15, 2012 in Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the UAE.

The Minister of Transport and Communications, Honourable Nonofho Molefhi signed the BASA on behalf of the Government of Botswana while Minister of Economy, His Excellency Sultan Al Mousuri signed for the Government of United Arab Emirates.

The BASA defines how the contracting countries will operationalize this Agreement. It gives designated airlines of both countries to fly unrestricted frequencies with unlimited capacity of passengers and cargo. It also provides full freedom rights for traffic (passengers and cargo) in and beyond the borders of the two countries, that is, it allows operators to ferry traffic from other destinations en route to their destinations.

This Agreement will enable the airlines from the contracting countries to operate in each other’s territory. In his remarks during the signing ceremony, Honourable Molefhi pointed out that he was hopeful that, “The implementation of this BASA will substantially increase air traffic movements and consequently promote connectivity, trade and tourism between our two countries and beyond”.

The Botswana/United Arab Emirates route, when fully operationalized, will provide an alternative for traffic to the European, Asian and Middle East markets. According to Honourable Molefhi, “Passengers will be spoiled for choice because currently, a majority of in-bound and out-bound passengers are forced to go via South Africa”.

More significantly, as more airlines enter this market, competition will be enhanced and consequently travel cost will go down while quality is improved. This will result in more business for the operators.

The ultimate goal of this Agreement will be realized by the economic growth through enhanced trade and tourism for both countries.  

The Government of Botswana has hugely invested in Aviation infrastructure and facilitated the necessary legislation and processes to provide a conducive environment for the development of aviation sector in order to diversify the economy.

The onus now lies with the Civil Aviation Authorities and the operators from the contracting countries to ensure that these Agreements see the light of the day.

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