Why Foreign Carriers Dominate African Airspace – Ethiopian Airlines MD

Lagos – Mr. Esayas WoldeMariam Hailu, Managing Director, Ethiopian Airlines International Operations has given an insight into why foreign carriers from the West and Middle East are dominating African airspace.

Hailu in an interview with some Nigerian journalists at Addis Ababa, Ethiopian, recently, observed that non-cooperation among African Governments was working against the growth of its aviation industry.

He decried that rather for the continent’s carriers to benefit from the open sky policy, Western and Middle East carriers have continued to benefit from the continent, airlifting over 80 per cent of air travellers out of Africa while airline operators from the continent airlifted the remaining 20 per cent.

He lamented that despite the agreement between the continent’s governments on open sky policy, implementation of the policy had been a mirage, warning that without implementation, African carriers would continue to play the second fiddle role to Western and Middle East carriers.

He also emphasised that the industry was over-regulated in terms of safety, but assured that with improved safety, insurance premiums for airlines on the continent would crash.

“So, it all boils down to meeting the safety requirements because aviation is a safety oriented sector. Once the aircraft is in the air, it needs to land back safely. So, it is for a purpose that safety is given big emphasis.

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