Minister Keyamo Highlights Importance Of SAATM At IATA’s Conference

Minister Keyamo Highlights Importance Of SAATM At IATA’s Conference

Nigeria’s Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo (SAN) has emphasized the critical importance of the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM), an initiative aimed at liberalizing the African aviation industry to enhance connectivity, improve safety standards, and boost economic growth.

A statement signed by Tunde Moshood, SA Media and Communications to the Honourable Minister of Aviation and Aerospace says the Minister gave this highlight while delivering his address at the International Air Transport Association (IATA) conference titled “Wings of Change Focus Africa 2024,” which held in Johannesburg and gathered key stakeholders in the aviation industry to discuss the future of air transport across the African continent.

The Minister underscored the need for collaborative efforts among African nations to realize the goals of SAATM, highlighting the potential for increased trade, tourism, and investment opportunities that a unified air transport market could bring, identifying key contributions necessary for achieving the SAATM objectives as policy harmonization, an advocacy for the alignment of aviation policies and regulations across African countries to create a seamless and efficient air transport market; significant investments in airport infrastructure and air navigation services to support increased air traffic and ensure safety and efficiency; capacity building in form of training and development programmes for aviation professionals to build a skilled workforce capable of supporting a modern and competitive aviation industry and Public-Private Partnerships, involving partnerships between governments and private sector stakeholders to leverage resources, expertise, and innovation for the growth and sustainability of the aviation sector.

The Minister also called for a concerted effort to address the challenges facing the African aviation industry, such as high operational costs, restrictive bilateral agreements, and limited access to financing. He stressed that overcoming these obstacles is essential to unlocking the full potential of SAATM and achieving the broader economic benefits for the continent.

The “Wings of Change Focus Africa 2024” conference served as a vital platform for dialogue and collaboration among African aviation leaders, regulators, and industry experts. The Minister’s contributions were well-received, reinforcing Nigeria’s commitment to playing a pivotal role in advancing the African aviation industry.

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Albinus Chiedu

Albinus Chiedu is a journalist, aviation media consultant, events management professional, and author. He has practiced journalism since 2000.

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