Michael Wakabi/KAMPALA

Gulf Air, Uganda Airlines and Air Tanzania are negotiating a tripartite agreement under which the three carriers will offer joint operations to Dubai out of East Africa.

The East African airlines will gain access to Gulf Air's world route network. Signing is expected at the end of this month once arrangements have been completed with Air Tanzania.

Gulf Air will provide a widebody twin-jet to serve the Dubai-Entebbe-Dar es Salaam routes to meet cargo capacity that cannot be satisfied by the East African carriers. "The deal gives us access to larger equipment and a global network with no conditions," says Davis Mugizi, Uganda Airlines' head of commercial services.

Uganda Airlines and Air Tanzania operate Boeing 737s to Dubai, but the aircraft's limited cargo capacity does not meet East African demand.

The airlines say codesharing will free aircraft to service further regional routes, which can feed the Dubai operation.

Source: Flight International