The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has called for governments, safety regulators and industry to take action to drive aviation connectivity and infrastructure development in Africa in order to assist the continents social growth and economic developments
Africa is set to be one of the fastest-growing aviation regions over the next 20 years. This is offering the African continent with a variety of economic opportunities with an annual expansion averaging nearly 5%.
But aviation faces considerable challenges, and for its potential to be realized, correct policies must be developed. Smarter regulation, and a focus on delivering the safety and connectivity commitments of the African Union, will be crucial to establishing Africa as a global aviation powerhouse,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s Director General and CEO at the IATA Africa and Middle East aviation day in Nairobi.
The event brought together key stakeholders under the theme “Connecting Africa” and is focusing on the frameworks to promotoe connectivity in regulations, operations and commerce. Tyler indicated in his speech that four key challenges needing to be addressed :
- Safety – “Safety must always be our first priority. Africa experienced zero jet hull losses in 2014, an excellent result. The all-aircraft accident rate, however, remains considerably higher than the global average. The Abuja Declaration commitments by African governments must be followed up with action to increase compliance with ICAO standards
- Smarter Regulation – “African nations have an opportunity to enact smarter regulation to enable better aviation connectivity. Implementation of the Yamoussoukro Decision will open up air routes within the continent and provide opportunities for more than 5 million additional passengers a year.
- Infrastructure –The provision of appropriate infrastructure, offering the right capacity at the right price, is essential for the growth of sustainable air services across Africa. “The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has very clear guidelines on infrastructure funding—and Africa has an opportunity to be a leader in this field by developing its infrastructure in close consultation with the industry.”
- Environment – “The industry is committed to meeting its carbon emissions targets. In particular, our goal of carbon-neutral growth from 2020 is of utmost priority. The negotiations for a global market-based measure to tackle carbon emissions from aircraft are entering a crucial phase ahead of the 2016 ICAO Assembly.