Air France-KLM Group on Friday, June 23, opened its new offices in Nairobi, Kenya that will serve as its headquarters in the East, Central and South Africa region.
The new offices, Air France noted, will serve seven countries in the regions as part of the airline’s plans to strengthen its network.
Commenting on the development, Air France-KLM Vice President Long Zoran Jelkic said that the company had strong confidence in the potential of Africa.
In addition, Jelkic explained that the firm is committed to offering dedicated services to customers in the continent.
“We really believe in the potential of the growth of Africa. We will be committed to serving our beloved customers of the African continent,” the KLM Vice President said.
On his part, the group’s Managing Director in East, South, and West Africa Marius Van Der noted that the move followed a restructuring process that ended in 2021.
According to the MD, the French National carrier favoured Nairobi owing to its position as the gateway to East Africa.
“The decision of opening our new offices here follows a restructuring exercise that we finished in 2021,” said Van Der.
Kenya’s Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen, welcomed the move and the choice for Nairobi as Air France’s hub in the region noting that it was a testament to Kenya’s confidence among investors.
Furthermore, the CS affirmed that the new offices will further enhance air transport in the region to facilitate transport of goods and services.
Air France KLM is one of the biggest airlines in global aviation possessing a fleet of over 548 aircrafts and carrying over 77 million passengers per year to over 318 destinations.
With its new offices in Nairobi, the group now joins a host of other notable multinational companies to set up offices in the Kenyan capital.
Meanwhile, the government of Kenya is seeking to have a modern terminal at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) by the year 2027.
According to the country’s Transport Minister, works on the project will commence in September 2023.
“In the next couple of weeks, at most two months, we should have been able to put in public the expression of interest for investors to come and build a new terminal,” Murkomen assured.
The airport serves about 8 million passengers every year and Kenya is looking at doubling the number.
“We want to move to 30 million a year…but it will be subject to the expression we are going to put forward an evaluation process and capacity for us to attract a good investment, and I hope in the next three years or so before 2027 we will have a new terminal,” the minister noted.
Air France-KLM opened its facility in Nairobi when Kenya’s President William Ruto was in Paris for the Global Financial Pact Summit.