Tanzania stops KQ passenger flights between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam

Kenya Airways stops passenger flights between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam. [File, Standard]

Tanzania has suspended Kenya Airways (KQ) passenger flights between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam effective January 22, 2024.

Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority (TCAA) Director General Hamza Johari, in a statement, said the move followed Kenya’s decision to decline cargo flights for Air Tanzania.

"This is to reciprocate the decision by the aeronautical authorise of the Republic of Kenya to refuse the Tanzanian request for all-cargo flight operations by Air Tanzania Company Limited under Fifth Freedom Traffic Rights between Nairobi and Third countries, contrary to Section 4 of the Memorandum of Understanding on Air Services, between Tanzania and Kenya signed on 24 November 2016 in Nairobi Kenya,” said Johari.

"The Republic of Tanzania shall always strive to adhere to the principles of the Chicago Convention and Bilateral Air Services Agreement between states."

Kenya Airways has since responded saying it is engaging Civil Aviation Authorities and relevant government agencies in both Kenya and Tanzania to find a solution that will ensure no flights are disrupted.

At the same time, Foreign Affairs ministers in both Kenya and Tanzania have agreed to resolve the issue amicably within the next three days.

"I spoke to my Kenyan colleague Musalia Mudavadi. We agree that restrictions of air travel between our countries and from any of our country to a third country shouldn’t stand. With relevant authorities, we’ve resolved to settle this issue, per existing agreements, within 3 days," said January Makamba, Tanzania's Foreign Affairs ministry.

His statement was backed up by his Kenya counterpart Musalia Mudavadi who stated; "I have this evening spoken to January Makama, Minister for Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation of the United Republic of Tanzania, with regard to the decision of the Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority to rescind the approvals for Kenya Airways to operate passenger flights between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam with effect from 22nd January 2024. We have jointly agreed that our respective Civil Aviation Authorities will work together to have the matter resolved amicably within the next three days. There should therefore be no cause for alarm."