|NEWS / PRESS RELEASES|
Kigali, Rwanda – 09 May 2016: The African Airlines Association and RwandAir are hosting the 5th Aviation Stakeholders Convention in Kigali, Rwanda from 7-9 May 2016 at the Serena Hotel. The Convention’s aim is to foster dialogue between stakeholders in order to build sustainable networks in supply chain management and create a competitive environment for aviation business in the continent.
The three-day conference which is being convened under the high patronage of Honourble, James Musoni, the Minister of Infrastructure of the Republic of Rwanda, is being held under the theme “Winning together through Innovation and Collaboration” and has attendance of over 350 high profile delegates from 43 countries across the world.
The overwhelming interest in this conference which is now in its fifth year indicates that the aviation sector in Africa abounds in opportunities. With a population of over 1.0 billion and a growing middle class, Africa accounts for 12% of the world’s population. Aviation in Africa is set to grow at 4.7%, outperforming the global average of 3.8%, with seven out of the ten fastest-growing markets in percentage terms being in Africa. On the other hand, African Airlines continue to be unprofitable and Africa is the highest losing region in the world.
AFRAA Secretary General, Dr. Chingosho in his welcome remarks said that a successful and viable African aviation industry is achievable, but this requires rigorous efforts as well as close coordination and collaboration by all stakeholders ranging from governments, regulatory authorities, airports, air navigation service providers, suppliers of the wide range of aviation products and services and the customers. “Together, we can ensure an integrated, interconnected Africa that is competitive within itself and globally, we would like to assist these various stakeholders forge win-win business relationships,” he added.
Emphasizing the relevance of the event theme, Mr. Fidelis O. Onyeyiri who delivered the opening speech on behalf of AFCAC Secretary General noted the numerous positive effects of successful collaboration amongst aviation stakeholders, In his speech, he informed the conference that AFCAC as the Executing Agency of the Yamoussoukro Decision (YD) on its part, was working together with industry partners, AFRAA, IATA and ICAO towards the realization of the achievement of the Single African Air Transport Market by 2017. “This we believe, is crucial for the sustainable development and integration of the African continent,” he said.
Mr. Barry Kashambo, ICAO Regional Director for the Eastern and Southern African Regional Office in his speech commended AFRAA for organizing the event noting that the theme was fully in line with the ICAO “No Country Left Behind” Campaign, which advocates for team work, coordination arrangements and mutual assistance through among States, in collaboration with Stakeholders. He said that, while the potential benefits of growth are enormous, chances are that they will not fully materialize unless the appropriate environment is created in an economically sound global air transport system for all stakeholders.
RwandAir Chief Executive Officer Mr. John Mirenge thanked the Association for choosing Remarkable Rwanda as the venue for the Convention. He expressed RwandAir’s commitment to the activities of the Association. “Rwanda is hosting major conferences and in particular RwandAir will be hosting the 49th Annual General Assembly of AFRAA in 2017 in Kigali. This in in line with the Government’s strategy of promoting Kigali as a hub for meetings, incentives, conferences and events (MICE). He thanked the Government of Rwanda for having prioritized aviation development through various initiatives and policies geared towards economic growth.
The Minister of Infrastructure of the Republic of Rwanda, Honourable James Musoni in his speech, underscored the Rwandan Government’s commitment to aviation development in Africa, highlighting various areas where it had taken measures in facilitating travel in particular the implementation of visa on arrival for all Africans in an effort to stimulate aviation, trade, investment and tourism. Hon. Musoni also expressed the Government of Rwanda’s commitment to the full liberalisation of African skies in keeping with the letter and spirit of the Yamoussoukro Decision and called upon all African States to honour their obligations for full implementation of YD.
Hon. Musoni thanked AFRAA and RwandAir for their excellent organisation of the Convention and wished delegates fruitful discussions during the two days. Hon. Musoni was the Guest of Honour and opened the Convention on behalf of the Government of Rwanda.
As part of the conference, there will be presentations and panel discussions on trendy subjects in aviation, networking opportunities and one-to-one appointment sessions. In addition to the conference plenary sessions, the programme has been structured to incorporate master classes where cutting edge ideas, industry best practices, new opportunities and practical solutions will be presented and discussed. The following masterclasses have been scheduled:
There will also be an exhibition of products, solutions and services by aviation suppliers in different categories. Suppliers and/or service providers will benefit from the outstanding visibility, networking and direct sales opportunities by displaying their products and interacting with delegates at the conference. The event exhibitors include: African Aerospace, Akagera Aviation, Airbus, ATNS, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, CANSO, Ethiopian Aviation Academy and MRO, Hahnair, Kenya Airways MRO and Training Center, Kenya Civil Aviation Authority, MTU Maintenance, Omni Air International, Aster Training Tunisia, Rwanda Civil Aviation Authority, RwandAir, Sabre Airline Solutions, Servair, SITA, South African Airways (SOC) LTD, Spectrum Aviation, Tunisair Technics, VIVO Energy Uganda and Wirecard Technologies GMBH.
The event is proudly sponsored by: A bed in Africa, Airbus, ATNS, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, Engen Petroleum Ltd, Kenya Civil Aviation Authority, Rwanda Civil Aviation Authority, RwandAir, Sabre Airline Solutions, Servair, SITA, UAS International Trip Support and VIVO Energy Uganda.
Notes for Editors
The African Airlines Association, also known by its acronym AFRAA, is a trade association of airlines from the member states of the African Union (AU). Founded in Accra, Ghana, in April, 1968, and headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, the primary purposes of AFRAA are to foster commercial and technical co-operation among African airlines and to represent their common interests.
AFRAA membership cuts across the entire continent of Africa and includes all the major intercontinental African operators. The Association members represent over 85% of total international traffic carried by African airlines.
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