Published on : Monday, May 30, 2016
The International Air Transport Association has called on African governments to prioritize the development of aviation nationally and at a pan-African level to bolster economic growth and development.
Africa is set to be one of the fastest-growing aviation regions over the next 20 years, with annual expansion averaging nearly 5%. This opens up incredible economic opportunities for the continent’s 54 nations. By transporting some 70 million passengers annually, aviation already supports some 6.9 million jobs and $80 billion of economic activity on the African continent.
“Aviation has the potential to be a much greater strategic catalyst for growth if governments would stop milking the industry for taxes and enable it with smarter regulations focused on safety and the development of connectivity. The commitments are already there with the Abuja Declaration and the Yamoussoukro Decision. It’s time to achieve them in partnership with industry,” said Hussein Dabbas, IATA’s Regional Vice President for Africa and the Middle East.
“Enhanced Air Transport Connectivity is unarguably the key condition for any State’s progress and transformation. Studies have shown that there is clear correlation between connectivity and economic performance. In addition, improved connectivity attracts inward investment, which enables access to export markets and opens countries up to competitive forces. Air transport is a facilitator of international business and trade. Improved connectivity means more access to cities, markets, business and people as well as the integration into global supply chains, an important factor to attracting inward investment into any country,” Nigeria’s Minister for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Abubakar Sirika.