Ethiopian Airlines 1st Dreamliner touched down at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport on 17 August 2012 at 9:30 Am. The Dreamliner had flown from Washington DC, Dulles international Airport, after a static display for VIPs including members of US Congress, World Bank and IMF Executives, Ambassadors, as well as members of the Ethiopian Diaspora and media.
The 1st Ethiopian Dreamliner was welcomed at Addis Ababa Airport by H.E. Mr. Hailemariam Desalegn, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, other Ministers and State Ministers of Ethiopia, Ambassadors based in Addis Ababa, representatives of aviation stakeholders, other invited guests, the media and Ethiopian Airlines management. The aircraft received a rapturous welcome by all those present with cheers and applause by Ethiopian staff and airport employees carrying banners and flags and Ethiopian transit passengers, who happened to be at the airport on this historic occasion.
Two fire trucks shot out the traditional celebratory water shower as the airplane approached its parking area in front of the Ministerial Salon. The Dreamliner was escorted by flight crew, flight attendants and flight technicians proudly harboring the green Ethiopian uniform. A Police Marshal band was also on hand playing in the background, in honor of Africa's first Dreamliner.
H.E Mr. Hailemariam said, "The arrival of the Dreamliner is an affirmation of Ethiopian Airlines’ commitment to play a leading role in the development of our country through the provision of the best possible, reliable and fast expanding air service."
On arrival, CEO, Tewolde G/Mariam said, "We are celebrating today the arrival of our firs 787 dreamliner on African Soil. With this arrival, Ethiopian has once again demonstrated that it continues to be the pioneer in African aviation by being the first airline in the world, outside Japan, to take delivery of the most technologically advanced commercial aircraft. This is a great success not only for Ethiopian but for the African Aviation in general."
Ethiopian has ordered 10 Dreamliners in total, five of which will arrive before December 2012. Ethiopian has already announced rotating destinations, primarily in Africa, for its 1 st Dreamliner. In mid- September, when the airline receives its 2 nd Dreamliner, it plans to deploy the aircraft on its Washington D.C. route.
Ethiopian Airlines, the fastest growing airline in Africa, made its maiden international flight to Cairo in 1946 and now the Airline provides dependable services to 69 international destinations spanning four continents.
Ethiopian is proud to be a Star Alliance Member. The Star Alliance network is the leading global airline network offering customers convenient worldwide reach and a smoother travel experience. The Star Alliance network offers more than 21,555 daily flights to 1,356 airports in 193 countries.
Ethiopian is a multi-award winner for its commitment and contributions towards the development and growth of the African aviation industry and in recognition of its distinguished long-haul operations enhanced by the introduction of new routes and products. Recently, Ethiopian won gold in the African Airline of the Year 2011/2012 Awards organized by the African Aviation News Portal. Ethiopian also received the 2011 AFRAA award for being consistently profitable over the years and has won the "AFRICAN CARGO AIRLINE OF THE YEAR 2011 Award” for its excellence in air cargo. Ethiopian also won the NEPAD Transport Infrastructure Excellence Awards 2009 and "the Airline of the Year 2009 Award" from the African Airlines Association (AFRAA).
With its acquisition of and firm orders for several new modern fleet, the airline is well positioned to pursue aggressively the implementation of its 2025 strategic plan to become the leading aviation group in Africa.