Advantage Africa – an update on latest travel developments across the Continent

Is the African market finally ready to fulfil its full potential? Will a new more open approach to air connectivity finally open the door to better intra-African connectivity? These are massive questions for a market that the International Air Transport Association (IATA) predicts will see the strongest growth over the next 20 years and will be home to some of the fastest growing individual country markets in terms of passenger demand.

Our regular round-up delivers some of the key aviation and travel news stories from across Africa.

  • Nigeria’s Minister of State for Aviation affirms PPP plans for four major airports to go ahead
  • Cape Verde CAA denies request by Binter CV to delay introduction of airfare cap
  • RwandAir and Zimbabwe Tourism Authority partner to boost Zimbabwe-UK traffic
  • Air Senegal receives first A319
  • Royal Fly-GH sets 1Q2019 target for launch of flights
  • ROUTE UPDATE: latest route launches and announcements
  • DATA SNAPSHOT: African air cargo payload by aircraft type (data: w/c 08-Oct-2018

Nigeria’s Minister of State for Aviation affirms PPP plans for four major airports to go ahead
Nigeria’s Minister of State for Aviation Hadi Sirika affirmed the government’s plans to concession the country’s four major airports under a public-private partnership arrangement. The airports will be concessioned for a maximum period of 30 years. The airports concerned include Port Harcourt Airport, Lagos Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Kano Mallam Aminu International Airport and Abuja Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport. Mr Sirika stated he expects the first A380 aircraft to land in Nigeria by 1Q2019, with new facilities in Port Harcourt and Abuja scheduled to open before the end of Oct-2018. He added: “The intent and purpose of this government regarding aviation is to concession these airports. We don’t believe that government can run these facilities and run them very well. We must hand them over to the private sector”.


Cape Verde CAA denies request by Binter CV to delay introduction of airfare cap
Cape Verde’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) responded to a request by Binter CV for an extension of the date for the entry into force of regulations imposing a maximum limit on domestic airfares. The CAA decided to maintain the date of implementation at 28-Oct-2018.


RwandAir and Zimbabwe Tourism Authority partner to boost Zimbabwe-UK traffic
RwandAir entered a partnership with the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) to offer promotional fares for services between Harare and London. ZTA corporate communications manager Hazel Sizani said the main objective of the partnership is to increase traffic from the UK to Zimbabwe.


Air Senegal receives first A319
Air Senegal has confirmed the delivery of its first Airbus A319 aircraft. The aircraft is leased from Avolon and the airline is expected to receive a second A319 in Oct-2018. The airline will use the aircraft to commence Dakar-Abidjan-Cotonou service and plans to expand its network to Bamako, Conakry, Niamey, Ouagadougou and Praia by the end of 2018. The carrier also expects to receive its first A330neo in early 2019 and commence Dakar-Paris service in Feb-2019.


Royal Fly-GH sets 1Q2019 target for launch of flights
Royal Fly-GH reportedly plans to launch domestic operations in Ghana by 1Q2019, after receiving a renewed air carriers licence (ACL) from the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority on 25-Jun-2018. The start up is now preparing to undergo a recertification programme to renew its AOC. As previously reported by CAPA, Royal Fly-GH Airline was a planned regional carrier that changed its name from Fly540 Ghana to Royal Fly540, before activity was suspended in 2016.


Route Updates

  • SA Express resumed Johannesburg-Walvis Bay service on 24-Sep-2018 and plans to resume Johannesburg-Hoedspruit service on 11-Oct-2018. The airline described the routes as “critical”.
  • Air Peace resumed Lagos-Asaba service on 08-Oct-2018, more than two years after it suspended the service. The airline has also commenced Abuja-Asaba service.
  • South African Airways (SAA) reportedly plans to operate 20 Johannesburg-Gan charter services between 02-Nov-2018 and 12-Jan-2019 using A340-300 equipment.
  • Turkish Airlines plans to launch a twice weekly Istanbul Ataturk-Port Sudan-Khartoum link from 11-Apr-2019, operating with A320 aircraft. The carrier also plans to increase Istanbul Ataturk-Khartoum frequency from seven to 12 times weekly on 12-Apr-2019, also operating with A320 equipment.
  • Air Cote d’Ivoire plans to launch three times weekly service from Abidjan to Bouake and Bamako on 01-Nov-2018.
  • Overland Airways commenced twice weekly Lagos-Cotonou-Niamey service on 03-Oct-2018. The airline also recently commenced four times weekly Lagos-Cotonou-Lome service.
  • Fly Uganda plans to commence three times weekly Kajjansi-Kihihi service on 02-Nov-2018. The service is expected to improve access to Bwindi National Park, near Kihihi.

DATA SNAPSHOT: African air cargo payload by aircraft type (data: w/c 08-Oct-2018)Source: CAPA – Centre for Aviation and OAG