Monday, October 26, 2015

Ethiopian Airlines targets Asia with new Chinese crew

(Oct 26, 2015, (Addis Ababa (AFP))--Africa's flourishing Ethiopian Airlines is clear -- the future lies in Asia and it plans to hit that point home by putting Chinese crew members on all flights to China as of next month. "Asia and particularly China is our focus. This is our biggest market," CEO Tewolde Gebremariam told AFP.

The Addis Ababa-based company already has flights to Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Guangzhou. Now the airline is training Chinese crews for its China-bound flights, because "90 percent of passengers flying to China don't speak English".

"They don't understand the safety instructions," Gebremariam said, adding that they needed teams that speak their language and "understand their culture". Some 30 young Chinese recruits are completing their training at the Ethiopian Airlines aviation academy.

"I chose Ethiopian Airlines because I want an international experience," said He Xupeng, who left a Chinese company back home to join the African air carrier.  Read more from AFP »

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