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Ethiopian Airlines becomes first African airline to operate with B787 Dreamliner

Source:Xinhua Published: 2012-8-12 16:20:01

Boeing 787 Dreamliner will be touching in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia's capital, next week making the Ethiopian Airlines the first airline in the world outside Japan to operate the aircraft.

Tewolde Gebremariam, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ethiopian, told reporters on Saturday that the Boeing 787 will be in Ethiopia next week to be followed by a dream tour to Kilimanjaro.

The aircraft will be arriving on the 17th of August and the Ethiopian will be making sightseeing flight to Kilimanjaro the following day with a batch of about 270 people consisting of ministers, ambassadors, other VIPs, Ethiopian ShebaMiles Gold Members, and the media among others.

According to the Ethiopian Airlines, starting from 19 August the first Ethiopian Dreamliner will be operating on rotation basis to about 15 African destinations including among others, Kilimanjaro, Mombasa, Harare, Lusaka, Nairobi, Entebbe, Lagos, Johannesburg, Abuja, Malabo, Douala, Lome, Accra, Maputo, and Luanda.

Dubai, Mumbai, Rome, London, and Frankfurt are also the destinations for Ethiopian's operation with the Dreamliner.

As the Ethiopian is the first airline to land in Kilimanjaro back in the old days, and as the airline has special attachment with Kilimanjaro, a tourist destination, the airline has chosen it for its first flight with the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, said Tewolde.

"It is very interesting plane. We have waited long; but, having seen the airplane we think that it is worth waiting; it is a very good airplane, technologically advanced, quite different from the existing jet technology; and the entire population of the Ethiopian Airlines, the entire population of Ethiopia, and the people of Africa, all of us are excited to receive the first 787 next week here at the Bole Airport to be followed by a Dream Tour to Kilimanjaro," said the CEO.

"Ethiopian Airlines is a truly indigenous African airline, which has been pioneering the African aviation for the last 67 years and it is only natural for us to deploy our first B787 in Africa. In affirmation of its commitment as Africa's flagship carrier, we are naming our 1st B787 Dreamliner as 'Africa First'," he said.

Having made its maiden international flight to Cairo, Egypt in 1946, the Ethiopian Airlines flies to 69 international destinations spanning four continents.
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