DELEGATES START ARRIVING IN SEYCHELLES
Airline CEOs continue to register to attend Routes Africa 2012
LAM - Linhas Aereas de Mozambique today became the 25th carrier to register for this year’s Routes Africa event when their CEO Ms. Marlene Mendes Manave confirmed that she will be in attendance in the Seychelles next week.
Other high-level airline delegates in attendance this year will include Mr. Gebremaraim Tewolde, Chief Executive Officer of Ethiopian Airlines, and Mr. Cramer Ball, Chief Executive Officer of Air Seychelles, who both registered earlier this year to take part in the Routes Africa Strategy Forum.
The event, which will take place on July 8-10, hosted by the Seychelles Tourism Board in partnership with the Seychelles Civil Aviation Authority and supported by the Airlines Association of Southern Africa (AASA), AFRAA (African Airlines Association), and ACI Africa, will see more route development professionals in attendance than any previous Routes Africa event.
Airlines represented at the event include Etihad, Qatar Airways, Mango, Kenya Airways, Comair, Iberia and, more recently, Turkish Airlines Cargo, Air Mauritius, and Vueling (who are looking to meet with West African Airports who wish to develop routes into Spain).
Routes Africa is now in its seventh year and the 2012 event will be the largest event to date. Last week, United Airlines also confirmed their attendance, which marks not only their first Routes Africa event but also the first time that a North American carrier will attend the networking forum for the African region.
Speaking at the time the hosting agreement was signed, Elsia Grandcourt CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board, said: “The team at the Tourism Board and the Civil Aviation Authority is fully committed, and they are convinced that this highly-important conference comes at an opportune time when Seychelles is repositioning itself as being accessible as never before and pushing to establishing new air access opportunities to the destination.”
David Stroud, Executive Vice President, Airports for UBM Aviation Routes, recently confirmed that preparations for this event are going well commenting: “We currently have more airlines and airports represented than at any previous Routes Africa event, and a number of highly-respected keynote speakers are confirmed to speak at the Strategy Forum on the afternoon of Sunday, July 8, which will provide an impactful opening to the event. We are very much looking forward to what promises to be the biggest Routes Africa event in history!”
DELEGATES START ARRIVING
Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk, the Minister responsible for Tourism for South Africa, landed in Seychelles just ahead of the 2012 Routes Africa Forum.
Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk was greeted at Seychelles International Airport by Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism & Culture; Elsia Grandcourt, the CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board; and Frederic Vidal, the General Manager of the MAIA Resort, the 5-star resort of the Seychelles that is managed by Southern Sun of South Africa.
The Southern African Minister said as he landed in Seychelles how happy he was to be discovering the islands for the first time and that he was looking forward to his stay in Seychelles.
Routes Africa 2012 will start officially on July 8 and end on July 12. During that same period, the International Council of Tourism Partners (ICTP) will be holding its own conference, as will the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands and the RETOSA Board.
Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk is starting his Seychelles visit by spending 2 nights at the South African Southern Sun Resort of Praslin before moving to the MAIA Resort on Mahe for the Routes Africa 2012 forum.
Minister St.Ange said that he was looking forward to welcoming his colleague ministers from Africa for Routes Africa 2012. “We shall have the opportunity during the coming days to discuss and network together, as we look at the challenges we all face in the field of aviation,” Minister Alain St.Ange said.