Astra Aviation signs ground handling agreement with National Aviation Services in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire

Wednesday 30th September 2015

  • Astra Aviation
  • Phil Eyre Managing Director Astra Aviation

Astra Aviation, the dedicated African flight support company, has signed a new Ground Handling Agreement with airport services provider, National Aviation Services (NAS), at Felix Houphouet Boigny Airport, Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire. Under the terms of the agreement (NAS), part of the Agility group, will provide the physical ground handling, whilst Astra, via its local company and offices, will handle and coordinate the customers' requests, along with managing the administration of payments for  airport, handling, navigation and crew costs.

This is the first time that Astra has signed a full SGHA with NAS and will ensure Astra Aviation customers receive improved service levels, an enhanced professional approach to ground handling, along with transparency and efficiency in contracting and payments.

The combination of Astra Aviation's experience of providing flight support services in Africa, with the know-how of NAS is set to raise the bar for ground handling in Cote d'Ivoire. "We wanted to work with National Aviation Services because we know they have made significant investment in staff training and in ground support equipment at the airport. That demonstrates commitment and professionalism, both attributes that reflect our own company ethos," says Phil Eyre, Managing Director of Astra Aviation.

Astra Aviation is currently the only flight support company with a signed Standard Ground Handling Agreement at the airport. It is also the first flight support company to have signed with a ground handling agent ahead of the new Cote d'Ivoire government tariffs implemented at the beginning of September. Eyre says of the timing of the agreement.

"We are aware that the new government tariffs may cause confusion and we are ready to support any ad hoc operators flying into Abidjan who may be unaware of the changes."

Astra Aviation has worked in Abidjan for six years, and Eyre has lived and worked there as airport manager for British Airways. With the agreement ratified Eyre expects to increase the Astra Aviation client base and is targeting the burgeoning hydrocarbon sector; international investors and financiers maximizing the strong presence of the African Development Bank in Abidjan and the opportunities it presents; along with diplomatic and governmental flights. He anticipates that the state-of-the-art ground service equipment will also attract wide body cargo business, an area that is also growing in the region.

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