Nigeria: African Carriers Lose U.S.$1.54 On Every Passenger - IATA

12 November 2019

Lagos — African carriers lose $1.54 for every passenger they carry, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has said.

According to IATA 2018 statistics, African airlines carried 92 million passengers which represents 2.1 per cent of global market share and up 5.5% over 2017.

IATA, which represents 290 airlines carrying 80 per cent of global traffic, stressed the need for a cost-competitive operating environment for airlines in Africa.

It called on governments and industry in Africa to focus on four priorities to allow aviation to drive economic and social development on the continent, enrich people's lives and enable the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).

IATA's Director General and CEO, Alexandre de Juniac, in a keynote speech at the 51st Annual General Assembly of the African Airline Association (AFRAA) in Mauritius said, high costs of operations contribute to the losses incurred by African airlines.

"Across the African continent, the promise and potential of aviation is rich. Already it supports $55.8 billion in economic activity and 6.2 million jobs. And, as demand more than doubles over the next two decades, the critical role that aviation plays in Africa's economic and social development will grow in equal proportion.

"With the right tax and regulatory framework, the opportunities aviation creates to improve people's lives are tremendous," he noted.

On safety, the association listed three priorities to improve aviation safety in Africa. They include the need for more states to incorporate the IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) into their safety oversight systems.

IATA also called on governments to follow treaty obligations and ensure the efficient repatriation of airline revenues at fair exchange rates.

Currently funds are blocked in 19 African states. "It is not sustainable to expect airlines to provide vital connectivity without reliable access to their revenues," de Juniac said.

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