(Posted 13th February 2024)
Airline Performance: Since November 2023, traffic carried by African airlines exceeded 2019 level. In January 2023, African airlines RPKs where 2.06% above the level of the same month in 2019 while ASKs where 7.1% above.
According to AFRAA estimates, African airlines will carry around 98 million passengers in 2024.
Regarding cargo, 149.6 million Kgs moved to/from Africa in November 2023, among which African airlines represented 30.8%.
At some major African airports (Johannesburg, Nairobi, Addis Ababa, Lusaka, Cairo, Casablanca, Abidjan and Lagos), intra-Africa connectivity reached or exceeded pre-Covid level since December 2022.
AFRAA predicts that 2023 will see an increase in airline revenues and the narrowing of revenue gap compared to 2022. The full year 2023 revenue shortfall of African airlines will be around US$200m or less, compared to 2019 full year. The 2022 full year passenger’s revenue gap was US$3.5 billion for all African airlines combined, compared to 2019.
Jet A1 price continues to fluctuate marginally from week to week. The global average jet A1 price ended the week of 19 Jan 2023 up 2% at $108.92/bbl.
Somalia: Somalia has taken back control of its airspace management from Nairobi to where its airspace control was reassigned in 2018., reflecting its commitment to sovereignty and self-governance. The transition of Somalia’s airspace from Class G to Class A marks a significant milestone in the country’s aviation sector. The class upgrade means Somalia will now provide Air Traffic Control Services, a crucial step in enhancing safety and operational efficiency.
Zambia has adopted the use of electronic cargo manifests, a forward-looking approach aimed at modernizing cargo processing and aligning with international trade standards. The move will expedite cargo handling processes, foster smoother operations, and support the objectives of the trade facilitation agreements.
A similar digitization move in Cameroon has seen the innovative use of a “Customs Cmr” or “Douane Cmr” mobile app in air passenger processing. This will streamline customs procedures and embraces digital transformation in passenger handling. The result will be efficiency and convenience for both passengers and customs authorities.
Tunisia increased tourism tax for economy and business class travelers to enhance revenue generation for the tourism sector. The increase which was without consultation with industry stakeholders could negatively affect the anticipated tourist arrivals in the country.
On a positive note, Tunisia has deposited its instruments of ratification of the Montreal Protocol 2014 (MP14) with the effective date of Jan 2023. Tunisia has become the 47th party to MP14 which addresses jurisdictional gaps that allow unruly and disruptive passengers to avoid prosecution AFRAA encourages all African states to ratify this protocol as a deterrent to unruly behavior on flights and at airports.
In January 2024 a meeting was held in Cologne to address challenges related to GPS spoofing. The event emphasized the importance of pilot training and highlighted ongoing commitment of the global aviation community to addressing emerging threats posed by spoofing. Balancing the adoption of newer technologies with considerations for evolving security challenges remains a critical aspect of ensuring the resilience and sustainability of the aviation sector. Collaboration and information-sharing are essential to navigating the complexities of the current aviation landscape.