MALABO, Equatorial Guinea – Punto Azul, Equatorial Guinea’s newest airline today formally announced the commencement of its flight operations at a colorful ceremony held at the Sipopo – Sofitel Hotel, Malabo. Addressing the guests during the well-attended launch, the newly appointed Punto Azul Managing Director, Mr. Paul Richards announced the airlines commitment to ensuring safe and timely operations while growing both the domestic and regional connectivity for passengers.
“This is a proud moment for everyone at Punto Azul as we announce the formal launch of operations. Bata becomes our first domestic destination and we are launching with three daily frequencies with the option of a fourth frequency. We are certain to add more frequencies and destinations for the domestic market based on demand and the opening up of more serviceable airports. It is our promise to you that safety, quality and reliability will form the corner stone of our operations going forward”, said Mr. Richards.
All Punto Azul flights will be operated on 48-seat Embraer Jet 145 offering single cabin configuration. The airline has recently taken delivery of three of these jets and has an agreement with National Airways Corporation (NAC) of South Africa as the operator while it works towards obtaining its own AOC.
During his speech, Mr. Richards further announced the commencement of flights to Sao Tome and Principe, making this the first regional destination for the airline. “Come June 21, 2013 we will take our inaugural flight from Malabo to Sao Tome. We will fly twice in a week starting with a Friday outbound fight and a Monday inbound option. We can affirm to you our commitment to connecting Malabo with key regional business and leisure destinations”, added Mr. Richards.
Though not formally announced yet, Punto Azul is expected to launch flights to Nigeria, Ghana, and Cameroun among other key Central and West African destinations. The airline also expects to utilize spare capacity by establishing and running a charter operation apart from the scheduled flights.
Top government officials, aviation authorities, hotel and travel trade personalities, the media and staff of the airline graced the well-attended launch event.