By Andy Sambidge
Agreement will see airline helping African nation's fledgling carrier to launch in 2010.
Dubai airline Emirates has signed a joint agreement with the Government of Senegal to help develop the African country's national carrier.
The Government of Senegal recently announced it has launched a new carrier - Senegal Airlines - scheduled to begin operations in 2010.
Following a high-level meeting with top Emirates officials including chairman and CEO Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, it was agreed the airline would help the Senegalese carrier in the start-up and post launch phases.
The agreement will cover commercial support, technical expertise, training and aviation-related goods and services.
Karim Wade, Senior Minister, Ministry of International Cooperation, National Planning, Air Transport and Infrastructure, Senegal, said: “Emirates is a world-leading company known for its innovation and superior product and service. We are pleased Emirates has agreed to share its knowledge, expertise and experience and support us in establishing Senegal Airlines.”
Sheikh Ahmed added: “Emirates has a strategic interest in Africa and currently operates to 17 points within the continent. The Senegalese government approached us to support the start-up of their new carrier and participate in its future, and we are delighted to add value to the aviation infrastructure of Senegal.”
The UAE and Senegal have been collaborating on a number of fronts and recently DP World was awarded the concession to develop and operate the existing container terminal at Dakar, Terminal à Conteneur, and invest in a new container terminal at the port, Port du Futur.
In addition, the Jebel Ali Free Zone is developing a special economic free zone connected to Senegal’s Blaise Diagne Airport.
"I am confident these recent associations will strengthen the links our two countries share,” added the Emirates chief.