By Innocent Orok
The Africa to Africa Tourism Promotion innovative chiseled out of Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), by the National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies ( NANTA), has opened up windows of profitable passengers capacity for Egypt Air.
The airline which was among the four African Carriers, RwandAir, Kenya Airways, and Ethiopian airlines pooled by NANTA President, Mrs Susan Akporiaye about three months ago, to kick- start the innovative Africa to Africa Tourism Promotion geared towards driving and facilitating intra African trade and tourism, has seen its passengers traffic on the rise, since Covid19 which slowed down travel business across board.
According to NANTA president, the cheerful report of patronage by association members under the scheme, is instructive of the values of collaboration under the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and to which the four airlines have committed to support through commercial aviation platform.
She said “I have received calls of appreciation from the management of Egypt Air, commending NANTA members for coming out with trade and tour groups since we birthed the agenda and you won’t believe it, all flights for shopping and holidays are headed towards Cairo and as the summer beckons, we expect Nigerians who are used to Dubai, will find Cairo a more better and inspiring alternative”. Mrs Akporiaye noted.
She reiterated that the Africa to Africa Tourism Promotion innovation by the association in collaboration with the airlines, would grow bigger and better, keeping the airlines busy and profitable all the round the year and that the NANTA members will be smiling to the banks.
” We are waiting for Kenya Airways to come up with their holiday brand, ditto RwandAir and Ethiopian airlines. Interestingly, RwandAir has reached us with its ambitious project and we at NANTA, will provide the needed support, particularly in getting them a window into Nigerian vast and virgin tourism market. We are waiting for Ethiopian airlines to address some concerns, otherwise, we are ready for the tourism trade revolution Worth more than three trillion dollars.” She further explained
Mrs Akporiaye, praised the efforts of her members to leverage on the initiative to remain afloat and survive the hash travel business climate brought about by Covid 19 pandemic, which influenced global border restrictions, thereby impacting on airline ticket sales.
She called on other professional travel trade Operators on NANTA membership, to join in the campaign, and organize trade and tourism tours, instead of waiting on tickets sales alone, adding that Egypt Air has promised to offer visa assistance to those with group tours, pilgrimage and trade visits.
” It promises to be better for the airlines and NANTA members as we partner and grow together. We shall soon make available to doubting Thomases the statistics of passengers growth capacity which our initiative have contributed to profitablity of the carriers in these tough times.” Mrs Akporiaye disclosed.