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Camair Co Launches New Route To Cotonou, Targets Pointe-Noire And Abidjan

Starting May 15, 2024, Cameroon's national airline, Camair Co, will begin serving Cotonou four times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday), with flights departing from Yaoundé and Douala. Sources within the company have also disclosed plans to launch additional routes to Pointe-Noire in the Congo and Abidjan in Côte d'Ivoire later in the year.

These new routes will complement existing services to Libreville, Gabon, and N'Djamena, Chad, which Camair Co resumed on December 21, 2021, and April 24, 2022, respectively. The expansion is part of the airline's efforts to reclaim its presence in the African skies after a two-year hiatus due to financial difficulties. Following a fresh injection of funds from its sole shareholder, the Cameroon government, the airline is refocusing on the domestic market, which it currently serves at only 45% of its potential, according to CEO Jean Christophe Ela Nguema.

Ela Nguema outlined that the recovery of its market position, supported by the acquisition of at least two Bombardier Q400 aircraft previously leased, is a crucial element of the company's restructuring plan. The plan also includes establishing a maintenance center, a training facility, a ground support unit, and a catering service, the CEO highlighted.

Despite financial challenges since its inception in 2011, making it the second most indebted public enterprise in the country after Sonara, these initiatives are aimed at preparing Camair Co for a forthcoming partnership with a strategic private investor. In a letter dated July 14, 2020, the Cameroon government expressed its intentions to the Prime Minister, urging immediate collaboration with various ministries to draft a restructuring, revival, and development plan for the airline. The government aims to open up 51% of Camair Co's capital to a private strategic partner, aligning with the 2006 decree that established the airline.


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