Government to hold not less than 10 per cent of home-based carrier

Accra- The Government will hold not less than 10 per cent of the home-based carrier to be established, leaving the rest to industry players and investors to ensure the reduction in state interference in the new airline.

The Government’s decision to hold not more 10 per cent, according to Mr Kofi Adda, the Minister for Aviation, was borne out from previous experiences when the state lost huge sums of money from the owning Airline due to mismanagement.

Mr Kofi Adda was speaking at a stakeholder consultation towards the establishment of the home-based carrier in Accra on Monday to solicit for views and support from investors and industry players to the rolling out of the new airline.

The Home-based Carrier is a concept for a new national airline to feed the aviation hub the country was creating in the West African Region.

He said the Government’s decision to own only 10 per cent of the home-based carrier would not earn the state some dividends, but would help in the country’s quest to become a hub for international airlines.

He said Government was taking advantage of the country’s unique location in the centre of the world with the equator running through Tema in the eastern part of Accra, and with the Greenwich Meridian going through Bawku.

Mr Adda said Ghana has a population of approximately 29.7 million with 36 airlines operating to Kotoka International Airport (KIA) in Accra comprising 24 international, two domestic, and 10 cargo airlines.

He noted that in 2017, passenger throughput in Ghana was more than two million with over 400 thousand domestic being.

Passenger numbers grew at the rate of 7.9 per cent from 2016 compared to the 5.6 per cent average growth in the entire African continent.

The Sector Minister said, the statistics was indicative of choice for investors, traders and tourists, which were key drivers for increased passenger numbers in the industry.

He said the country recently opened the Terminal 3 at the KIA, which had capacity for five million passengers per annum adding that, with the expansion of Kumasi and Tamale, if converted to international status, Ghana can receive about 9.5 million passengers nationwide.

He said the business of government was to create the conducive environment for the private sector to thrive and to maintain a stable macro-economic environment that would enable businesses to do the necessary planning to undertake their activities.

Mr Addah, however said the country would fly her national flag as part of the country’s foreign policy and to promote the country’s economy in the sphere of global competitiveness.

He could however, not give specific timelines to operationalisation of the new airline, as it could only be determined after the stakeholder consultation and from the cabinet.

In a speech read on her behalf, Ms Christina Edmund, the Acting Chief Director of the Ministry of Aviation said, the establishment of the home-based carrier had so far seen a number of consultations at different levels to ensure the adoption of right strategies and mechanisms.

The country in the past had owned and operated the Ghana Airways and the Ghana International Airlines, which could withstand the test of time.

The Akufo-Addo-led Government is adopting a fresh approach to establish a new airline, but this time largely owned and operationalised by the private sector.

Source: Ghana News Agency