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Profile: Rebuilding Afghanistan's international airline
04 October 2011
Safi Airways has survived management changes, and a ban on flying to Europe, to turn a profit since April.
When private Afghan
airline, Safi Airways, was banned from flying to Europe last
year, it was a blow serious enough to force a relaunch of the
Frustratingly for Safi
Airways, which is International Civil Aviation
Organization-complaint, it was not the airline's
The blanket ban issued by
the European Union prevented any Afghan-registered aircraft
from entering EU airspace, because of safety concerns about
Afghanistan's airline regulatory body.
But it is not the
airline's only problem. Since starting in 2006, Safi Airways,
which flies two international routes, to Dubai and Delhi, has
operated in a war zone.
The airline, which is
owned by Afghanistan's Safi family, has its headquarters in
Kabul. However, the company also keeps administrative offices
John Roijen, chief financial officer, Safi Airways, who
joined the airline at the beginning of 2011, works most of the
week from Dubai, and flies to Kabul just one day...
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