Ethiopian Airlines celebrates anniversaries of inaugural flights to 14 destinations in the month of November. Notable among them is the inaugural flight to Beijing operated with Boeing 720 on November 7, 1973, thus marking 40 years of uninterrupted service to China.
A pioneer in African aviation, Ethiopian was the first African carrier and the fourth in the world to fly to China. Since the first flight 40 years ago, China has been a key market and continues to be one of the most important destinations for Ethiopian. Currently, Ethiopian has non-stop daily flights to Beijing and Guangzhou. In total, Ethiopian serves 25 weekly flights to four destinations in China, which will grow to 28 weekly flights at the end of the month.
"The start of flights to China 40 years ago marks an important milestone in the history of the airline. We were there at the very beginning when China started opening up to the world and have ever since been providing reliable services to the country. With the exponential growth in overall ties between China and Africa in recent years, we have significantly scaled up our operations to the country. China-Africa relations are forecasted to grow significantly in the coming years, and Ethiopian Airlines will be there to cater to the needs of the travelling public by availing the best possible connections to Africa, using the most modern aircraft", said CEO Tewolde Gebremariam.
The month of November is also significant in Ethiopian Airlines’ history with the largest number of flight inaugurals, including Abidjan, Abuja, Accra, Brazzaville, Bujumbura, Brazzaville, Entebbe, Guangzhou, Juba, Kuwait and Maputo.
Flights to Bujumbura were inaugurated 35 years ago on November 14, 1978, and to Brazzaville 30 years ago, on November 1, 1983. Since its humble beginning in 1945, Ethiopian has always been dedicated to "Bringing Africa Together," "Connecting Africa to the World" and now embodies "The New Spirit of Africa", a continent confident in its ability and promising future.
Ethiopian Airlines, the fastest growing airline in Africa, made its maiden international flight to Cairo in 1946 and now the Airline provides dependable services to 70 international destinations spanning four continents.
Ethiopian is proud to be a Star Alliance Member. The Star Alliance network is the leading global airline network offering customers convenient worldwide reach and a smoother travel experience. The Star Alliance network offers more than 21,555 daily flights to 1,356 airports in 193 countries.
Ethiopian is a multi-award winner for its commitment and contributions towards the development and growth of the African aviation industry and in recognition of its distinguished long-haul operations enhanced by the introduction of new routes and products. Recently, Ethiopian won gold in the African Airline of the Year 2011/2012 Awards organized by the African Aviation News Portal. Ethiopian also received the 2011 AFRAA award for being consistently profitable over the years and has won the "AFRICAN CARGO AIRLINE OF THE YEAR 2011 Award" for its excellence in air cargo. Ethiopian also won the 2012 "African Airline of the Year Award" from Air Transport Quarterly Magazine.
With its acquisition of and firm orders for several new modern fleet, the airline is well positioned to pursue aggressively the implementation of its Vision 2025 strategic plan to become the leading aviation group in Africa.
Mr. Tewolde GebreMariam Group Chief Executive Officer