The case to fly to Tajikistan is not as clear-cut due to the complex geopolitical landscape, however, there are some opportunities due to its strategic location, which makes it a potential entry point into Central Asia for international airlines. The country is attracting increased interest due to the Silk Road OBOR, unexplored gold/silver deposits and its energy potential, which is forecast to boost business air travel to the country. The larger opportunity for airlines is for outbound demand that faces the most probable threat from an EM slowdown.
Perks of Tajikistan
- Key partner in Silk Road One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative • Very mountainous so highly dependent on air Strategic location at heart of Central Asia
- Expensive jet fuel in Tajikistan of more than USD1,600 per tonne • 40% of costs are spent on jet fuel
- High average airline ticket price for direct flights Moscow – Dushanbe is USD220, relative to income
- International air connectivity – heavily skewed to intra-regional; Very few international airlines
- 5 million inbound and outbound trips
- High proportion of air – 84%
- Leisure arrivals dwarf business travel
Tajikistan is an untapped potential to explore. One can tap into Silk Road/OBOR potential demand as well as the people going to and from Russia. A Dushanbe hub would open up Tajikistan to Russia, CIS, Iran, and China. Potential airline partners are Somon Air and S7 and it would give way to the opportunity for adventure and pilgrimage travel from the Middle East and Asia.