Kenya’s Ministry of Transport has clarified that the Somalia minister in charge of Aviation Mohammed Abdullahi Salad has no role in awarding the tender for General Sales Agent for Kenya Airways in Somalia.
Kenya Airways had in November 2018 requested interested parties to bid for the General Sales Agency in Somalia territory.
“It is Kenya Airways and officials from the ministry who will follow due procedure to decide who to partner within the new market,” said a senior ministry official.
The request for proposals was advertised in the same month that Kenya Airways launched direct flights from Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) to the Somali capital Mogadishu.
“The addition of this route to our network demonstrates our commitment to improving connectivity on the African continent while creating new opportunities for corporates, investors, traders, and tourists,” Kenya Airways CEO Sebastian Mikosz said then.
He added: “We want to extend our network reach and make it convenient for our guests who work and invest in Somalia.”
Seeking a partner in Somalia, the national carrier said in a statement: “The proposition seeks to identify and engage competent and independent General Sales Agents to partner with Kenya Airways in the positioning and promotion of KQ Passenger Sales in the Somalia region.
The Agent will be expected to drive the following result areas: Sell KQ Passenger traffic exclusively, achieve agreed revenue targets, show commitment to the partnership by making a set and agreed level of investment in staff and other resources,” said national carrier in a statement.
The daily non-stop flight leaves JKIA at 07:40am to arrive in Mogadishu at 9:55am local time and then departs Aden Adde International Airport, Mogadishu at 10:45am to arrive back in Nairobi at 1:00pm.
The request for proposal comes at a time when Kenya Airways seeks a partner who can investigate market and find out new and exciting passenger traffic attractions as well as provide local expertise to KQ to promote relevant packages, promote and position to prominence KQ brand in Somalia market, and develop a solid business plan/ strategy for KQ in Somalia on annual basis
KQ, as the airline is known by its international code, flies Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 on this latest route set to ease travel between the two cities.
“With the demand for travel by traders to Somalia through Nairobi increasing, the launch of this route is expected to ease travel between the two cities that are the focal points of business in the two countries and spur commercial activities,” said the CEO.
KQ’s direct flights to Somalia will help Kenya narrow her widening trade deficit with the war-torn nation which currently stands at Sh99.8 billion ($974.5 million).
Exports to Somalia increased by 33.5 percent in the first half of the year, making it the third-largest destination for Kenya’s merchandise in Africa after other markets shrunk.