June 05, 2014: Astral is pleased to announce the arrival of its Fokker 27 Utility Freighter which arrived from Bergamo, Italy on 23 May 2014 where it had undergone its C Check and makeover.
According to Astral CEO, Sanjeev Gadhia, the Fokker 27 was the missing link in Astral's fleet considering that it did not operate any 5 ton freighter. The Fokker 27 will fill the gap in Astral's fleet which consist of the 14 tons capacity, DC9 Freighter, 24 tons capacity, B727 Freighter, 38 tons capacity DC8-63 Freighter and 110 tons capacity B747-400 Freighter.
The Fokker 27 will improve Astral's schedule efficiency by offering a alternate solution during low payloads and offer accessibility into new markets where load factors are low.
The Fokker 27 will be introduced to Astral's existing oil and gas network into Pemba (Mozambique), Mtwara (Tanzania), Lokichar / Kapese (Kenya) in addition to Mwanza (Tanzania)
The Fokker 27 will be available for adhoc charters within Eastern Africa.
The company also plans to increase its flights between Nairobi and the capital of the Mozambican province of Cabo Delgado, Pemba, from one a week to two.
"In the last 12 months we have carried 800 tons of cargo related to oil and gas projects in the Rovuma basin, which is related to cargo brought in on ships from Houston, Aberdeen, Dubai, Singapore and Johannesburg," said Gadhia.