IATA, AFRAA sign MoU to advance aviation in Africa

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HARARE – The African Airline Association (AFRAA) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) have  teamed up to facilitate development of the aviation sector on the  continent.

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed in Sydney, Australia, this  week seeks to deepen cooperation between the two associations in  exchanging information, expertise and capabilities.

IATA said on its website on Sunday, the MoU was signed by its director  general and chief executive Alexandre de Juniac and AFRAA secretary  general, Abderahmane Berth on the sidelines of the 74th IATA Annual  General Meeting in Sydney.

De Juniac said under the MoU, IATA, and AFRAA would exchange  information, expertise, and capabilities and work jointly to enhance  safety.

He said the organizations expected to achieve this by assisting  airlines to successfully implement the IATA Operational Safety Audit  (IOSA), IATA Safety Audit for Ground Operations (ISAGO) and the IATA  Ground Handling Manual (IGOM).

According to de Juniac, both organizations would promote regional air  connectivity by working jointly with governments to support  implementation of the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM)

He said the two organisations would encourage data exchange among  aviation stakeholders to improve the passenger experience and enhance  security through capacity building.

“Africa is full of potential. Unlocking the economic and social  benefits of aviation is a critical element of the continental  development,” he said.

Achieving the potential, however, would not happen by chance as  continuous improvement in safety, an effective regulatory framework, and  fit-for-purpose infrastructure were essential, he said, adding to  achieve that, strong partnerships were required.

“This MoU will strengthen IATA already close relationship with AFRAA  and help ensure that global standards and best practices form the  backbone of Africa aviation growth,” said de Juniac.

On his part, Berthe said the MoU paved the way for further development  of the aviation industry in Africa, where air transport already  supported 6.8 million jobs and generated $72.5 billion of economic  activity on the continent.

“AFRAA and IATA share a common vision which is the development of a  safe, secure and sustainable aviation industry in Africa that  facilitates business, trade, and tourism and contributes positively to  Africa’s economic growth and development,” he said.

“This MoU with IATA will commit both our organizations to work together  even closer on the main priorities for African aviation. In particular,  we count on IATA to provide the requisite technical support across a  number of areas such as improving aviation infrastructure and capacity  building with national regulators,” he said. – New Ziana

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