Kigali - The African airline operator RwandAir wants to acquire two Airbus A330neo and two Boeing 737 MAX 8 in 2019. The company intends to improve its network through Africa but also open the new routes to New York, United States and Guangzhou, China.
On the occasion of the IATA's annual meeting in Sydney, the Rwandan national airline based at Kigali airport detailed its plans of growth. Interviewed by ATW, CEO Yvonne Manzi Makolo explained that RwandAir's fleet would be enriched next year by two Airbus A330neo aircraft.
These new planes will be used to launch new routes to Guangzhou in China and New York this year.
On the domestic and regional network, RwandAir operates four Boeing 737-800, two 737-700, two Bombardier Q400 and two CRJ900 that will be removed from the fleet.
The arrival of two 737 MAX 8 in 2019 will, according to the CEO, enable the airline to open up new routes on the continent including Bamako in Mali, Conakry in Guinea, Addis Ababa in Ethiopia and Djibouti. Since the beginning of the summer, the company has inaugurated flights to Abuja in Nigeria and Cape Town in South Africa.
RwandAir plans to transport nearly one million passengers in the current fiscal year, compared to 740,000 in the previous year, Makolo told ATW. The most significant challenges for the company are fuel costs, capacity and having enough qualified resources like pilots.