Ugandan Government to Buy A330s and CRJs for Uganda Airlines?
The Uganda government could acquire up to six aircraft should it take up the recommendations made in an inter-ministerial report concerning the proposed relaunch of a new national airline, ch-aviation reports. Quoting excerpts of the report, the Uganda Monitor newspaper said last week that Yoweri Museveni's government may source up to USD331 million from various financial institutions, one of which could be the Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank, more commonly known as the PTA Bank. With leasing dispelled as a viable long term option given the accrued costs, the proposal has, instead, pointed to the acquisition of narrow- and wide-body aircraft suitable for regional and international services. “Government will purchase the aircraft using loan finance sourced internationally at an interest rate of 5 per cent per annum and over periods of 7-10 years (One A330-200 cost is estimated at USD109.5 million. Two are required, while a CRJ-900 at USD27.96 million, with aircraft needed under the plan,” the report said. Aside from the USD330 million in fleeting costs, government also intends to contribute USD70 million as start-up and working capital for the airline. Ethiopian Airlines has been touted as a possible adviser in the new venture although no known formal contracts have yet been signed. Uganda has been without a de-facto flag carrier since the Ugandan Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA) grounded the Aga Khan Foundation's Air Uganda project in 2014.