The African Airlines Association (AFRAA) has welcomed four new member airlines – Safarilink, a safari airline from Kenya; Air Djibouti, Djibouti; Air Senegal, Senegal; and Uganda National Airlines Company Ltd from Uganda.
AFRAA’s membership comprises of all the major intercontinental African operators with the association’s members representing over 85 percent of total international traffic carried by all African airlines. Currently, the air transport market in Africa supports $55.8 billion in economic activity and 6.2 million jobs. Over the next 20 years, African aviation is forecast to grow at 5.9 percent year-on-year.
Commenting on the growth of the continental body, AFRAA secretary general Abderahmane Berthe said, “We are thrilled to welcome these new members to our association; we will continue to remain true to our mission to promote, serve African airlines and champion Africa’s aviation industry.”
He added that in the last 50 years, AFRAA has been at the forefront of major initiatives in the air transport field in Africa, helping African airlines address key challenges that hinder their growth such as high operational costs in Africa, limited market access and intra-Africa connectivity, barriers to movement of people and goods across the continent, skills gaps among others.
The association has task forces and steering committees in place to reduce airline costs, increase their revenues, address members’ common interest and adopt industry best practices. Through these projects, AFRAA seeks several avenues to address pertinent challenges and identify common solutions to pave way for the efficient and sustainable airline industry in Africa.
The focus areas of the joint projects include fuel purchase, distribution, route network coordination, ground handling, cargo, training, technical and operations and aeropolitical.