Zimbabwe’s Aviation Sector Soars with $4.5 Million Investment

AGS diversifies into passenger handling business and aims to enhance efficiency and quality of services

by Motoni Olodun

Zimbabwe’s aviation industry has received a major boost with a $4.5 million investment in new passenger handling equipment by Aviation Ground Services (AGS), a company that provides cargo and passenger services at the country’s five commercial airports.

The investment, which was announced on Wednesday, November 24, 2023, is part of AGS’s diversification strategy, as the company entered the passenger handling business in May 2023, after previously focusing on cargo handling.

According to AGS Managing Director Shingirai Ruombwa, the new equipment, which includes baggage handling systems, wheelchairs, and vehicles, will enable the company to handle wide-body aircraft and simultaneously service up to three arrivals and departures.

He said the investment was aimed at enhancing the efficiency and quality of passenger services at Zimbabwe’s airports, as well as meeting the expectations of the customers and the regulators.

“We are committed to exceeding the expectations of our direct and indirect customers and to living up to our brand line, ‘The Power on the Ground’, in the performance of all our tasks,” he said.

He also expressed the company’s desire to collaborate with other ground-handling companies to make Zimbabwe a premier air travel destination.

The investment was lauded by the Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Felix Mhona, who said it was in line with the government’s vision to modernize the country’s transport network and infrastructure.

In a speech read on his behalf by Loveness Dumwa, a chief director in his office, Mhona said the government had allocated ZWL60.8 billion (USD166 million) to the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure Development for various projects, including the upgrading and rehabilitation of airports, roads, railways, and border posts.

He also said the government had approved the airline’s reconstruction scheme in May 2021, which cleared the airline’s domestic and foreign debts and made it commercially viable.

He urged the stakeholders to work together for the benefit of the nation and the economy and stressed the importance of proper equipment maintenance to maximize its lifespan and contribute to improved service delivery.

“A robust airport infrastructure is pivotal to the economic growth of our country and requires the participation of all citizens,” he said.

The investment by AGS comes at a time when Zimbabwe’s aviation sector is showing signs of recovery and growth, after being severely affected by the global pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns and travel restrictions.

According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (CAAZ), the country recorded a 42% increase in passenger traffic in the first half of 2023, compared to the same period in 2022. The authority also said it had granted Foreign Operator Permits to two South African airlines, FlySafair and Cemair, to operate passenger and cargo flights to Harare and Victoria Falls.

In addition, Air Zimbabwe, the national carrier, announced plans to acquire new aircraft and expand its routes in 2023, with the help of an international aviation consultancy led by former Etihad Airways executives.

The developments in Zimbabwe’s aviation industry are expected to boost the country’s tourism sector, which is one of the main drivers of the economy and a source of foreign currency.

Zimbabwe is home to some of the world’s most spectacular natural wonders, such as the Victoria Falls, the Great Zimbabwe ruins, and the Hwange National Park.

With the new investment and the improved infrastructure, Zimbabwe hopes to attract more visitors and investors and to position itself as a competitive and attractive destination in the region and beyond.

Source: ZimEye

You may also like

white logo with motto

The Zimbabwe Advocate is more than just a news outlet. We are a movement, a symbol of resistance against misinformation.

Latest News

© 2024 The Zimbabwe Advocate. All Rights Reserved.