Ato Girma Wake, an AviaDev event patron joined the industry leaders panel discussion via youtube to share his ideas on the practicalities of open skies in Africa.
According to him, The Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM), a flagship project of the African Union Agenda 2063, an initiative of the African Union to create a single unified air transport market in Africa to advance the liberalization of civil aviation in Africa and act as an impetus to the continent’s economic integration agenda, was taking shape.
"Twenty-Eight (28) African states have made commitments to implement SAATM, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Morocco will soon join in, mighty Nigeria has also signed the Memorandum of Implementation (MOI)".
For him, they were a few challenges that were affecting the Implementation of the SAATM
1. CEO's had a responsibility to move their companies forward and to do that, they needed a free market. If they decide to stay in their small market, they may sustain themselves for a while but they may not grow the airline. Therefore they had the challenge to open up their minds and see the advantages of building a bigger market than to leave themselves in a small protected market. Airline CEO's must look beyond tomorrow - Ato Girma Wake
2. Civil Aviation Authorities (CAA)'s responsibility was to the nation and Africa. Also to keep the aviation industry in Africa safe and secure. Even though there was a form of protectionism everywhere, he believed that it was their duty to make their countries enjoy the advantages of connectivity. The advantages of that were enormous.
3. AFRAA had a question posed to them, why they allowed airlines and civil aviation of other countries to continue to protect their markets to the disadvantage of millions of people who want to travel in Africa.
SAATM will ensure aviation plays a major role in connecting Africa, promoting its social, economic and political integration and boosting intra-Africa trade and tourism as a result. The SAATM was created to expedite the full implementation of the Yamoussoukro Decision (IATA).
Watch the below video for more.......