Fastjet (FN, Dar-es-Salaam) has confirmed that Fly540 Angola (F5, Luanda) and Fly540 Ghana (5G, Accra) are being restructured with the objective of increasing shareholder value. The Tanzanian LCC said that after a detailed evaluation of the potential of Fly540 in both Ghana and Angola, it had concluded that, although these countries present very 'significant' long-term opportunities for the fastjet low cost model, in the short term, fastjet intends to fully focus on East and Southern Africa.

As a key part of the restructuring, two group-owned Avions de Transport Régional (Toulouse Blagnac) turboprops previously operating in Ghana and Angola have been taken out of service and are currently in the process of being sold.

While an ATR72-200, leased from Helitt Líneas Aéreas (H9, Malaga), continues to operate in Ghana, the Angolan operation has been temporarily suspended, pending the return to service of two leased aircraft currently undergoing maintenance.

The ch-aviation route network database shows Fly540 Angola serves Benguela, Cabinda, M'Banza Congo and Soyo from its Luanda hub using two ATR72s while Fly540 Ghana operates just one route - Accra to Kumasi.

In contrast to fastjet's Low Cost Carrier model, the two subsidiaries operate on a traditional airline model.

Further details on the restructuring of both 540 operations will be announced in due course.

Fastjet interim chairman and CEO, Ed Winter, said: "We are currently focused on expanding the low cost fastjet network in East and Southern Africa by establishing bases in Zambia, Kenya and South Africa and these plans are progressing well. However, our overall vision is to create a pan-African low-cost network and, as such, launching the low cost fastjet model in both Angola and Ghana remains firmly part of the Company's long-term plans."

With its current services limited to domestic Tanzanian flights as well as regional routes to Johannesburg O.R. Tambo and Lusaka, fastjet has announced plans to expand its network to include Harare Int'l, Entebbe/Kampala, Nairobi Jomo Kenyatta and Mombasa in the next few months.