Africa’s aviation infrastructure has not kept pace with traffic demand, with extensive deterioration seen in infrastructure that is now in dire need of investment; however, the next three decades could see the sector shine, should a 15-year-old declaration be implemented. Print Send to Friend 0 1 African Civil Aviation Commission secretary-general Iyabo Sosina on Wednesday told delegates at the Infrastructure Africa conference, in Sandton, that airport and general aviation infrastructure in Africa was “not where it needs to be”.
Despite this, in the next 30 years, Africa’s aviation industry would be where the European aviation industry was currently, she assured, but only if the Yamoussoukro Decision of 1999 was adopted amid the above-average rise in traffic growth. The Yamoussoukro Decision, which was intended to liberalise intracontinental air services among all African nations, was slow to be adopted, with only a handful of African countries having, so far, embraced the “open skies” policies.
However, the implementation of the decision, which Sosina believed would be the saviour of Africa’s aviation industry, was on the right track, with the respective Transport Ministers across the region “scrambling” to advance the agreement and ensure that many of the required respective regulatory frameworks were in place. Sosina noted that the aviation sector was the vehicle of growth for any society, country or company and that more and more leaders were realizing that the aviation sector needed support and a platform to thrive.
Sosina noted that the aviation sector was the vehicle of growth for any society, country or company and that more and more leaders were realizing that the aviation sector needed support and a platform to thrive. Despite many African governments’ hesitation to provide a level playing field, for private sector airliners to competitively participate and to deal with other inherent challenges associated with aviation in Africa, a lot of work had been done in Africa that would lay the groundwork for an aviation industry as successful as that in Europe.
Further, with the African continent only holding 3% of the world’s air traffic and its yearly passenger traffic ahead of the global average, the opportunities were abundant and the “future bright”, she said. Africa was expected to have a yearly air passenger growth rate of 5.7%, above the world average of 4.7%.