Ethiopian Airlines set to join Star Alliance

(HornTrade) – Ethiopian Airlines was officially invited to join Star Alliance Wednesday, and aims within 12 months to become the group’s third member on the African continent following EgyptAir and South African Airways. ET’s integration, under the mentoring of Lufthansa, will begin “shortly.”

“On behalf of the Chief Executive Board, it gives me great pleasure to invite Ethiopian Airlines to join the Star Alliance network,” Star CEO Jaan Albrecht said at a ceremony in Addis Ababa. “Ethiopian’s extensive intra-African network will provide more choice for our travelers and bring the Star Alliance benefits to new markets. Moreover, we will in the future have three main hubs in Africa—Addis Ababa, Cairo and Johannesburg—allowing for an ideal access to the continent from either the North, Center-East or South”.

“Ethiopian will definitely enhance Star Alliance’s global network. Our long experience in the Africa market, coupled with our strategic hub Addis Ababa and the recently created Lome hub, will allow Star Alliance members to access many new markets in Africa,” outgoing ET CEO Girma Wake said.

Star noted that the acceptance of ET is an “integral part” of its Africa strategy aimed at responding to the predicted high growth of the continent’s air traffic. Market studies by IATA and ICAO show that Africa is forecast to have the second-highest growth rate in air traffic in the coming years.

ET will add five new countries (Chad, Congo, Djibouti, Mali and Niger) and 24 African destinations to the Star Alliance network. Several Star carriers currently operate to/from ADD, including LH, MS, SAA, Turkish Airlines and bmi.


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