Gulf Air to pull out of Kenya

NAIROBI - Gulf Air will pull out of Kenya "in a matter of weeks" after several years of services on the Nairobi to Middle East routes. The airline has been flying into Nairobi for the last 17 years.


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Published: Sat 28 Feb 2004, 12:19 PM

Last updated: Wed 1 Apr 2015, 11:56 PM

Sources said the airline's director responsible for Africa, Robin Middlleton, jetted in on Monday from Abu Dhabi and surprised its 30 members of staff in Nairobi with the news that head office had decided to pull out of Nairobi.

Most of the staff, said the source, were in shock after learning of the "strategic" decision.

Gulf Air, with its five flights a week from Nairobi to Dubai via Abu Dhabi, has been under pressure from a competitor, which flies 14 times a week on the Nairobi-Dubai route, and Kenya Airways, which has 10 flights a week on the route. Gulf Air's low fares of $299 compared to $400 charged by the competition did not help the Arab carrier.

Staff said they had expected their airline to reduce flights and were surprised about the decision to pull out. It is suspected that the strategic "aero-political" arrangement had been made in the UAE in consultation with other carriers.

Gulf Air was founded in 1950. It is owned by the Kingdom of Bahrain, Oman and the UAE. Its network stretches from Europe to Asia and Australia and covers more than 45 cities in 34 countries, with a modern fleet of 34 aircraft.

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