ICAO applauds African countries’ progress in aviation

The International Civil Aviation Authority (ICAO) has concluded its ‘2018 African-Indian Ocean (AFI) Week’ series of events in Niamey, Niger Republic, reaffirming that Africa has now established the necessary partnership and policy foundations to help African countries realise the full socioeconomic potential of future air transport growth.
Speaking at the event, the Secretary General of ICAO, Dr.
Fang Liu said Aviation is recognized as crucial to the achievement of the United Nations Agenda 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) She added that the industry supports almost seven million jobs and generates more than 72 billion dollars in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Africa.
ICAO’s Fifth AFI Aviation Week was attended by over 200 participants from 41 states and 20 international and regional organisations.
This year’s event comprised the Fifth AFI Aviation Safety Symposium, the Third Aviation Security and Facilitation Symposium, the Seventh Meeting of Directors General of Civil Aviation in the AFI Region (AFI DGCA), and meetings of the steering committees responsible for the implementation of the regional plans for aviation safety, security and facilitation.
Liu stressed that air connectivity is a unique and indispensable catalyst for socio-economic growth that links remote areas to cities, cities with the world, and goods and services with the global market place.
Highlighting recent landmark achievements towards amplifying these contributions, Liu applauded the official launch of the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM) earlier this year, which will offer the opportunity to unlock increased connectivity and the value it delivers, as well as significant progress on compliance with ICAO standards and recommended practices (SARPs), notably through the implementation of the UN aviation agency’s global plans and AFI Regional Plans.
“The number of AFI States with significant safety concerns (SSCs) has been reduced to two, compared to the four we had itemized in 2016” she said.
While recognising this remarkable progress, Liu highlighted that “the average effective implementation rate in the AFI Region stands at 52 per cent, which is lower than the global average of 66.5 per cent and below ICAO’s current minimum target of 60 per cent.” She encouraged AFI States to continue to work together to strengthen and make use of cooperative mechanisms such as Regional Safety Oversight Organizations (RSOOs), given the significant challenges that remain ahead.

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