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In celebration of its 70th anniversary, Ethiopian airlines has been carrying out facility visit sessions for government officials, prominent business persons, celebrities as well as the media, among others. The airline that has had seven decades of experience has won multiple awards for its services and is the biggest airline in Africa.
This week, Ethiopian opened its doors to visitors that were keen to see one of the airline’s prized facilities, the Flight Simulators, Cargo, MRO and its newly inaugurated Aviation Academy.
In line with its vision 2025 strategic road map, Ethiopian Airlines Group invested USD 100 million in breakthrough expansion and upgrading its Aviation Academy. The scale and scope of the expansion sealed the Academy’s position as the largest and the finest Aviation Academy in Africa with annual intake capacity of 4,000 students.
Since it started February 1964, Ethiopian has had given pilot training and graduated a total of 1062 students from 39 countries around the world until 2016. Out of the total number of graduates, 712 were Ethiopians. Similarly, during the same period, the airline has graduated 4167 students from 51 countries in maintenance service. Out of that total number, 3140 were Ethiopians. This statistics shows how much the airlines capacity has grown.
The new aviation academy has many class room buildings. The Technical block houses the Pilot Training School and the Aviation Maintenance Training School; while the Commercial and Leadership block accommodates the In-flight Services Training School, Commercial and Ground Services School and Leadership School.
We are thrilled to mark March 8 with an All Women Operated Flight, which reaffirms nonexistence of Gender specific profession, if equal opportunity for education is ensured for all
It also has separate Administration building, workshops, auditorium, students’ dormitory and large cafeteria. As an ATO (Authorized Training Organization), the B-777, B-787, B-737, B-767/757 and the Q-400 full flight simulators enables the academy to offer full type rating trainings for pilots.
“Education is the greatest equalizer in today’s global village. We are proud to be in a position to avail the latest and next generation aviation technology training machines and facilities where we can train the continent’s youth and prepare them for the 21st century African Aviation development. The Ethiopian Aviation Academy is positioning itself to be the catalyst leader in aviation training technology in supporting the African Union to realize its vision 2063,” Tewolde GebreMariam, Group CEO of Ethiopian said back in February, 2016.
According to the airline, currently, the academy has the best aviation training technology like full range of fleet cabin emergency, evacuation and door trainers fitted with standard swimming pool for cabin crew ditching exercises and more than 20 pilot training aircraft, the finest expertise, dedicated and experienced instructors and the most suitable environment for students.
The airline is also continuously expanding in the development of most of its departments. The New Cargo Terminal, expected to be operational towards the end of 2016, will have an annual storage, for both dry and perishable goods, of 1.2 million tons with capacity to handle eight B747-800 freighters at any one time.
Currently, the airlines capacity is 300,000 tons. It is stated that the construction of just the first phase will cost around USD 150 million.
A four star hotel construction is also in the works by the airline. The hotel, to be built on 40,000sqm located in front of the Millennium Hall on Bole Road, is said to be operational in 24 months. Ethiopian serves around 6 million passages per year of which 50 percent are transit passengers making the construction of the hotel even more a necessary deed.
Ethiopian’s In-flight Catering Services is also under expansion; the current capacity is to provide 22,000 meals per day and once expanded, it will have the capacity to provide 80,000 meals per day.
The airline also promotes good causes such as celebrating International Women’s Day with an all women operated flight that was dispatched on the Addis Ababa-Kigali route. That specific flight was aimed at further strengthening Ethiopian corporate conviction of “Women Empowerment for a Sustainable Growth”.
“We are thrilled to mark March 8 with an All Women Operated Flight, which reaffirms nonexistence of Gender specific profession, if equal opportunity for education is ensured for all,” Tewolde had said. He also pointed out that to date, aviation is still a male-dominated industry and Ethiopian will strive to step up the balance and assure women that the sky is not the limit anymore.
Ethiopian has always been an environmentally conscience organisation. Since the 1990s, the airline has implemented a system where no chemical waste would be discharged into the environment. The airline always treats waste before it goes out into the environment and disposes chemicals in a careful environmental friendly manner.
Ethiopian holds the lion share of the pan-African passenger and cargo network operating the youngest and most modern fleet to 92 international destinations across five continents. Ethiopian fleet includes ultra-modern and environmentally friendly aircraft such as the Boeing 787, Boeing 777-300ER, Boeing 777-200LR, Boeing 777-200 Freighter, Bombardier Q-400 double cabin with an average fleet age of five years. In fact, Ethiopian is the first airline in Africa to own and operate these aircraft.
In implementing its strategic 15 years plan called ‘Vision 2025’, Ethiopian aims to become the leading aviation in Africa with seven business centers. These includes: Ethiopian Domestic and Regional Airline; Ethiopian International Passenger Airline; Ethiopian Cargo; Ethiopian MRO; Ethiopian Aviation Academy; Ethiopian In-flight Catering Services; and Ethiopian Ground Service.