Full Speech by Rt Hon Prime Minister in Entebbe on welcoming Uganda’s second Airbus A330neo
The full speech of Rt Hon. Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda in Entebbe on welcoming Uganda’s second Airbus A330neo.
Heads of Diplomatic Missions;
The Permanent Secretary;
Heads of Government Agencies;
Chairman and Board Members of Uganda Airlines;
Members of the Press;
Ladies and gentlemen
On 28th August 2019, I was here to launch the official start of Uganda Airlines commercial operations and flag off of the maiden flight to Nairobi.
Since then, Uganda Airlines has expanded its operations to cover six (6) countries and nine (9) destinations in the region.
It is therefore gratifying to be back here to celebrate the continued growth of our National Airline.
Fellow Ugandans, when Cabinet approved the recommendation of the National Airline Task Force to purchase Airbus A330-800neo for the Airlines’ fleet plan for long haul flights, Government of Uganda proceeded to mobilize the required funds for aircraft purchase, and eventually firmed up orders of the Aircraft in April 2019.
Consequently, the First Airbus was delivered on 22nd December 2020 and the Second one has been delivered today.
These Aircrafts have been fully paid for using our own resources and that’s why we have been able to make it in a record time.
We are grateful to the NRM Government under the leadership of His Excellency the President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and the people of Uganda for providing all the required resources in a timely manner.
The establishment of the National Airline is aimed at improving air transport connectivity to and from Uganda in order to enhance the country’s competitiveness and foster economic transformation; through promotion of international trade, stimulating our nations’ economic growth, generating employment, and facilitating movement of people, goods and services.
This will contribute significantly to transforming Uganda from predominantly peasant to a modern and prosperous country as per the aspiration of Uganda Vision 2040.
I am pleased to learn that the Airline has already announced destinations to Europe, Asia and the Middle East, as these will offer key markets for our tourism and exports.
Absence of direct flights has always been a big hindrance to our international tourists and business community who have had to bear the inconvenience of multiple stopovers.
Therefore, with the introduction of direct flights by Uganda Airlines, our tourists are guaranteed of reduced journey times and an exciting experience.
Additionally, the NRM Government is implementing an export-led growth strategy and, the great cargo capabilities of the Airbus A330neo is a big boost for our export aspirations.
On behalf of the Government of Uganda, and on my own behalf, I would like to thank Airbus for the good partnership with Government of Uganda and for manufacturing this great Aircraft for our National Airline.
I have been informed that the Project Team for this Airbus A330neo which we are receiving today has been managed by our Ugandan Engineers who actively participated in the Engineering and component design, supported by other Teams.
Also, I have learnt that the core Technical Teams operating our Aircraft including Pilots and Engineers are Ugandans.
This indeed is a great milestone for our country and we congratulate Uganda Airlines upon this achievement.
Allow me to thank the Shareholders of Uganda Airlines Company ltd; the Hon. Minister of Works and Transport and the Hon. Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development for ensuring that the financial position is always good. Keep it up.
Lastly, I wish to appreciate the Board, Management and Staff of Uganda Airlines who have steered this Airline since the start of commercial operations and the Project Task Force before then, the Ministry of Works and Transport, Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development and all stakeholders for supporting our National Airline.
Government of Uganda is pleased with the progress of Uganda Airlines and we are certain that acquisition of this new modern Airbus A330neo will make our Airline more competitive in international air travel.
It is now my pleasure to officially receive the second Airbus A330neo for Uganda Airlines.
Thank you very much.
FOR GOD AND MY COUNTRY.