MIAMI – The Government of the Republic of Burundi has plans for a new carrier under the name of Burundi Airlines to launch in 2021.

According to a December 24 cabinet statement, the airline will be a merger between Air Burundi (8Y) and ground handler SOBUGEA.

Both entities are state owned and the Republic of Burundi will own a 92% stake in the airline with smaller stakes belonging to an insurer and the estate of now-defunct Belgian airline Sabena (SN).

Air Burundi Caravelle back in 1976 Photo: By Steve Fitzgerald –, GFDL 1.2,

A Fresh Start

Air Burundi itself started operating in 1975 with a broad fleet ranging from the DHC-6 Twin Otter to the Sud Aviation Caravelle until 2007 when it suspended operations due to technical issues.

The airline briefly resumed operations in 2008 with a Beechcraft 1900 from Bujumbura (BJM), Burundi to Kigali (KGL) in Rwanda and Entebbe (EBB) in Uganda before shutting down in 2009.

Following the cessation of operations, 8Y did receive a Chinese MA60, which will hopefully allow Burundi Airlines a smooth and profitable start connecting Burundi to the world.

Featured image: Air_Burundi_Xian_MA-60_at_Kunming_-_Wujiaba (1) Photo: By Xu Zheng –, CC BY-SA 4.0,