The Ghanaian Government has selected Ethiopian Airlines (ET, Addis Ababa) as the strategic partner for its planned new national carrier.

According to Aviation Ghana, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by Aviation Minister, Joseph Kofi Adda, at Ethiopian’s headquarters in Addis Ababa on Tuesday, December 4. A final agreement is due before Christmas.

Other contenders that had put forward proposals included Turkish Airlines (TK, Istanbul Atatürk) and Air Mauritius (MK, Mauritius).

According to the report, the Ghanaian government will not take more than a 10% stake in the airline, which is expected to launch in 2019. Ethiopian will control49% and private Ghanaian investors will hold the remaining 41%.

Ethiopian has interests in multiple (nascent) carriers across Africa including Guinea Airlines, ASKY Airlines, Tchadia Airlines, Ethiopian Mozambique Airlines, Malawian Airlines, and Zambia Airways.

During the recently ended AFRAA AGM in Rabat, Congo Airways (8Z, Kinshasa N'Djili) chief executive reiterated the carrier's plans to partner Ethiopian Airlines.

"I think it is important to have a strategic partner onboard, and this can bring a lot of value," he said.

According to the CEO, talks between Ethiopian and Congolese government officials took place in 2014 and 2015. However renewed dialogue would likely have to take place with Congo's new government, due to be installed after elections later this month, from either April or May of next year.