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Uganda Airlines to stop making losses in 2027 - Bamuturaki

Uganda Airlines plane

Uganda Airlines plane

Uganda Airlines will no longer need government financial support from 2027 onwards after breaking even, Jenifer Bamuturaki the chief executive officer of the Uganda National Airlines Company has said.

According to reports by the Auditor General, for the last three consecutive financial years, Uganda Airlines drew a lot of negative media publicity and posted huge losses; Shs 104 billion in FY 2020/21, Shs 164 billion in FY 2021/22, and Shs 234 billion 2022//23 – all totaling Shs 502 billion.

The reports that were submitted to parliament prompted further scrutiny of the operations of the airlines by the public accounts committee on commissions, statutory authorities, and state enterprises (Cosase) to help shape the entity’s strategic plan.

Now, Bamuturaki explains that while the audit reports portrayed the airline negatively, the losses the entity recorded during the period under review were justifiable - citing inevitable variable and administrative costs. To curb losses, Bamuturaki says the company has invested in managing the cost of fuel and oil, maintenance, rentals, and crew through personnel training, process automation, airplane seat configuration, and extension of routes among others, to enable the entity to move towards break-even.

"For us to be able to manage our losses, we must manage our operations and run an efficient operation. So when we come to fuel, we have very high fuel costs because the cost of fuel in this part of the world is very expensive. So it takes a lot of training even with our pilots - how they take off, how they land, at what point do they start to engage to land? So all those things come down to reducing our costs of fuel and then it will eventually speak into our losses," said Bamuturaki.

Bamuturaki revealed that her administration internally has set a timeline of at least three years from now to be able to break even as the airline currently generates enough revenues to meet its direct operation expenses such as maintenance costs, crew costs, landing fees, and navigation charges among others.

"Internally, we're looking at at least 3 years' time. We should be walking towards breaking even. Another interesting thing is our revenues internally meet 85 per cent of our costs without government support. The revenues we make are 3 times more than what we get from government. That is the other side of the story that you never know. So what our plan is and what we're working towards internally is to stop coming to government and be able to meet our own expenses," she added.

Asked about his expert opinion on the performance of current performance of Uganda Airlines, Abderahmane Berthé, general secretary of the African Airlines Association (AFRAA), to which Uganda is a member, observed that since its revival in 2019 after 18 years of absence, the future of Uganda Airlines is commendable especially as it acquires new flight routes to expand the network.

Since 2019, with six aircraft, Uganda Airlines flies to about 12 destinations as of 2023 including Nairobi, Dar-es-Salaam, Bujumbura, Mogadishu, Zanzibar, Mombasa, Kinsasha, Juba, Lagos, and South Africa among others. It also operates intercontinental flights to Dubai, Mumbai, London, and Guangzhou.

At its infant state of revival, Uganda Airlines notably suffered global shocks inflicted by COVID-19 global travel restrictions as nations attempted to mitigate the spread of the killer virus.


0 #1 kabayekka 2023-12-04 12:07
That is what much of the public is saying. This is a national and international money making business that needs to make money for itself and the landlocked country.

A loss of shs 502 billion for 3 consecutive financial years is a lot of money even if the tax payer pays that amount of money to run state house every year.

As national finance in Uganda goes, state house has no revenue to give to the treasury but Uganda Airlines to break even in its major finance, must show that it is ready to buy about 20 or 30 aeroplanes by 2027 as it pays back to government capital assets.

What about the payments for the airport land lease to the Ganda tribespeople and so on and so forth! Recently there were government planners who wanted more land to develop and expand this international airport.
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+2 #2 PaulM 2023-12-05 10:28
So Bamuturaki now wants to train Uganda Airlines pilots how to "kuba endobo" in order to save fuel.

Did she pick these pilots on the street?
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0 #3 Kidepwe 2023-12-06 17:12
Quoting PaulM:
So Bamuturaki now wants to train Uganda Airlines pilots how to "kuba endobo" in order to save fuel.

Did she pick these pilots on the street?

PaulM, don't laugh. In Uganda under this regime, anything and everything under the sun is possible. Wasn't Pinetti picked off the streets of Rome, and before you could say Jack Robinson, was tasked to oversee the construction of a multi-trillion hospital?

Or Kananathan who demanded that all would-be female employees had to be virgins? Bumuturaki herself didn't get the job on merit, did she?

So, if she is advising pilots on how to economize on fuel, well, she probably took a cue from Museveni's COVID-19 tutorial, on how a household of 7 can manage to feed on a half kilogram of posho. The farce that Uganda has become, continues.
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