Kenya Airways resumed its passenger flights to Dar-es-Salaam on Monday after Tanzania lifted the suspension of all Kenyan flights to the neighbouring East African nation.

According to Allan Kilavuka, the Kenya Airways CEO, the move by KQ comes after the Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority issued a circular announcing the immediate restoration of all flights by Kenyan airline operators on September 16.

“We are pleased to resume our services to Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar following this announcement by the Tanzanian government. Tanzania is critical to both Kenya and East Africa’s economic growth and we look forward to our continued collaboration,” said Kilavuka in a statement on Monday.

Kilavuka said the first KQ flight left Nairobi for Dar on Monday with a second plane set to depart for the same destination on Wednesday before the Kenyan carrier starts to operate two daily flights to the largest Tanzanian city. 

The Tanzanian aviation regulator made the announcement allowing Kenyan planes back on its airspace on Wednesday after Kenya lifted the 14-day mandatory quarantine requirement it had placed on Tanzanian nationals visiting Kenya.

KQ resumed domestic commercial flights on July 15 and international flights on August 1, four months after suspending operations owing to the Covid-19 outbreak and resultat restrictions.

President John Magufuli banned the national carrier from flying into Dar after Kenya government excluded Tanzania in a list of countries whose passengers would be allowed into Kenya when commercial flights resumed after Coronavirus restrictions were lifted.

The diplomatic rown between Nairobi and Dar seemed to ease after President Uhuru Kenyatta announced reversal of the decision last week paving way for the reciprocal decision by Magufuli allowing normal KQ flights to the East African country to resume immediately.